Work experience week at ApplinSkinner

This week, we’ve been lucky enough to be joined by 17-year-old Olivia who is studying at Thorpe St Andrew Sixth Form. Olivia joined the design team for a week to get some hands on experience of what it’s like to work agency-side.

What have you been working on this week?

Throughout this week I have been taught how to work within a brief for a client, considering every aspect of how they wish to be represented and from this designing a complete brand, learning about the importance of a well-constructed name, efficient logo, suitable typeface and effective colour use to suit the desired representation.

How does what you’ve been doing here compare to what you’ve been studying to do?

My studies have taught me a number of skills that are very much applicable to this internship, such as critical reflection, judgement and analysis, so I felt somewhat prepared. However, this experience has been very different to what I have encountered previously. The creative process is surprisingly a lot different: when working for my own studies I generally jump straight into my ideas and end up using the first few I come up with, because I know exactly where I want my project to be. This week I have been shown that in this industry it is far more complex and challenging than that when working for a client; you have to really brainstorm and think through every idea as well as it’s context and connotations. I hadn’t done much graphic design work previously at all – for my GCSE and A-Level Art I always tended to work more with ‘traditional’ mediums and techniques, thus never being able to experiment with digital design.

What is it like working in the office compared to how you expected?

I have enjoyed working in the office – it has been excellent to be able to collaborate with others and bounce ideas off of others, it really adds to your confidence in your own ideas, which I didn’t expect.

What do you think the value of work experience is for you, against studying?

Work experience in any industry is exceptionally valuable on so many different levels. For myself, it stands me in excellent stead for my future plans – while also looking good on paper – by giving me a fantastic first-hand insight into how the design industry works from a commercial point of view, which I never would have acquired through my studies. Consequently, this has reaffirmed my future objectives of working within the Art and Design industry.

What is something new you’ve learned this week?

Until this week, I had designed/created solely for my own projects and studies, meaning I never had the opportunity to design and work from a brief, for someone else. This week has furthered my comprehension of developing ideas with a client’s brand in mind, and has opened my eyes to just how challenging this can be. The importance of typography and grids was also something I learnt this week, and how they provide a vital baseline for design and layout.

What are your next plans for study or career?

My current plans are to complete my second year of sixth form, after which I plan to study an undergraduate art degree at university. I am considering BA (Hons) Fine Art and BA (Hons) Graphic Design.

What would you say to someone thinking about doing work experience?

To someone considering work experience, I would say jump at the opportunity. Aside from looking good on a CV, the experience allows you to develop skills in an industry that appeals to you, which is invaluable. You obtain an understanding of how well suited you are to an occupation – you can test-drive a career path. You gain experience that is beyond textbooks and classroom knowledge whilst also building confidence in an area of interest.

Are you interested in doing work experience at ApplinSkinner? Email us: [email protected]

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