Emily Payne grew up in Mill Valley, California and Amherst, Massachusetts. She received her B.A. from Oberlin College in Ohio and her M.F.A. in Printmaking and Book Arts from San Francisco State University in 1999. Her work can be seen at the Seager Gray Gallery in Mill Valley, the SFMOMA Artist Gallery in San Francisco, the Kala Art Institute and the Cecile Moochnek Gallery in Berkeley.