Understanding beauty

Meet Heini; a talented Finn working with strategic design, creative direction and research


1. How did you start your career as a designer and writer?  What was your inspiration and motivation?

HL : “As many other writers, I started ‘my career’ as a child by reading nearly everything I could. I also drew and painted through my childhood, and was lucky enough to have teachers that gave me freedom to experiment with both. The founding motivation is curiosity, I guess, and later a need to make the world a bit more beautiful and sustainable place to live in. How the word ‘beautiful’ can be understood, again, is a longer story.

I work independently as a creative director on concepts and content management of print, online and spatial media around societal aspects of design. In practice, this mainly means books, magazines, online platforms, websites and exhibitions. Working independently is still always working together, and I work with an international network of visual designers, writers, photographers and other professionals. I also write essays about the relation of design, aesthetics, human environments and interaction, and wellbeing.

At first, the dual interest in writing and design led to working in fashion and design journalism, and to establishing an online fashion publication in Finland. I have degrees in fashion business and marketing, in interior architecture and as the latest, in social design at Design Academy Eindhoven in the Netherlands. Now all this is coming together both in my own research and writing, and in the projects for my clients. “

2. What is currently your business goal?

HL : ” A quite a natural next step is to work on a book of my own. I’ve been doing research on the role of experience of beauty in human well-being, and how that can be applied to the design of human environments and interactions. Writing a book is a long process, but the research and journey through philosophy, psychology, neuroscience, arts, design and architecture – even physics – is fascinating. What makes all this interesting from perspective of societal design is the development of research technologies. Bodily and psychological reactions to our environments and to other people can increasingly be measured, which provides new kind of credibility to elements that have previously been considered too intangible to really be taken seriously. “

3. Why did you choose The Library?

HL: “I was looking for a multidisciplinary co-working space and a working community with a mix of different expertise, working fields and nationalities. I found that at The Library. A variety of backgrounds and skills enables finding new perspectives and connections, and creates kind of in-between spaces from which something new can appear. The same applies to Brussels as a city, I think.

Also The Library’s contemporary classic working spaces appealed to me from the beginning. Even though people can be stressed because of work, The Library is a kind of a stress-free zone to work in.”

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