002 — Key lessons I learned whilst interning….
The first thing I want to blog about is perhaps the most vital part of a young creative’s career in design: The Internship. When looking back at my own experience it seems that I had it OK. I never interned for free, I only had to make coffee for the ‘team’ a few times and no one duct taped me to anything — quite disappointing really.
However, I did learn a few lessons along the way that might be interesting and informative to the medium world.
1. Always ask if there is anything you can do before you leave.
Whilst interning at Adam & Eve I noticed that the interns leaving bang on 6pm didn’t last long. Agencies crave commitment and passion above all else. I found that if you even left 15 mins after the ‘home time’ people started to notice.
I combated this by at least asking the studio manager or project manager if they needed anything else before I left. Now this can sometimes lead to some idiot who can’t be bothered to make his own ‘powerpoint presentation’ to lump it on your desk. But more often than not it is greeted with a smile and a ‘no, don’t worry, see you tomorrow’.
If you are not learning anything. Leave. As simple as that. You are not in an internship to get paid, make the mega bucks. You are there to learn from that art director who seems to know how to create that great Ad, or the project manager who seems to manage to get everything done and still have time for a 3hr lunch… (maybe don’t take tips from him)
You should take something away from everyday. Even if it’s just how to set up an ad for print or how to export a gif. Every little helps.
3. Take Notes
Simple one. But vital. Always take notes. Tolerance for errors is higher for interns but not that high. If you forget something that you could have written down it won’t be appreciated.
4. Stay off Social Media
May sound weird. But any work you do on an internship is probably confidential. Stay off ‘insta’ with that layout you just have to show people…
On one particular internship one of my fellow interns posted a picture of an ad he had done on twitter. Needless to say. He did not come in the next day…
5. Most importantly. Ask questions. Always ask questions
The more questions you ask the more you learn. At my first job as a junior designer, I was sat next to a man called Nick. He was an Senior Artworker who knew a lot about things I wanted to know about. I must have asked him 50 questions in the first week. I may have been annoying but if you show a willingness to learn most will be happy to help.
Shoutout to Nick, who is probably still sat in the corner of that studio…
Anyway, that’s about it. Episode 2 of the blog over. Gonna go pay for this overpriced coffee now…