Expectations Vs Reality

14 Apr

So we finally have a blog post from our interactive design intern Stephan Rosger, better late than never I suppose *wink*
In this post Stephan touches on a few of his expectations prior to his 6 week internship here at Copeland, and what actually happened. Needless to say, I think he expects to leave without being eaten alive by zombies, but lets hear him out anyway.

Intern Expectations

Wow, the past 6 weeks have gone by like nothing, but I’ve learned a ton. Here’s my attempt to sort of go over a few of the things I expected and learned during my time here.

Expectation #1

“Assist in a diverse range of interactive projects that utilize and/or compliment the skills and approaches I’ve learned through the course of the interactive design program. These skills include UX, IA, HTML/CSS, PHP, SEO, social media and project management.”

Actual Experience

Thanks to Creative Director Doug Brown partnering me up with Copeland’s Interactive Art Director Tom Hammarberg, I was able to exercise my skills in 2 different ways. The first way was mainly with larger clients. As a junior in my first week I would take somewhat of a co-piloting position performing a specific task while watching closely over Tom’s shoulder. Here I received a dose of production work experience, and finished off with a good glimpse of what it was like working for larger clients.

The second type of experience given to me was taking on smaller to medium sized clients, and playing more of a primary roll. This roll would include getting involved in creative briefs, conceptualization and wireframing among other things. This primary roll is very reminiscent to the way I would deal with clients as a freelancer earlier in my career, except I’m working with a team as oppose to working by myself. This kind of experience will definitely come in handy down the road.

In both types of experiences I found myself fulfilling most of my expectations when it came to using my tech skills – so far so good!

Expectation #2

“Participate as much as possible in the visual design process, from conceptualization to implementation in both web and print.”

Actual Experience

Since I’m doing primarily web based work, I haven’t been able to get my hands that dirty with the printed collateral. I was hoping to get involved in some layout projects, but I would’ve spread myself way too thin. I did however manage to check out some of the branding projects that the art directors were working on, weigh in on some of the comps, and give feedback when fresh eyes and opinions were needed.
By having so much access to the art directors here, I’ve been bugging them for their advice on typography, and bounce ideas off of them for some of my visual web design work. If your interested in typography by the way, we have a talented in-house font maker Michael Tension. Check out some of his stuff here.

As for web design, I’ve been able to put my own creative ideas into some facebook pages I’ve worked on through Copeland’s social media expert Asmaa Methqal, and follow through with a full design. I’d often be constrained to use elements from other collateral, but was able to get creative without losing the message or muck up the design’s integrity. My main concern was just making sure I didn’t butcher the Senior Art Directors hard work!

Expectation #3

“While I’m there I can find out what every role in the workplace is like by spending at least a couple hours with each and every staff member…”

Actual Experience

I had no problem spending time with everyone here. I made a point of dropping by everybody’s office to chat with staff members about their roll in the agency. If they were too busy I would try to catch them on their lunch break, and I received a ton of advice and insight into what goes on with them everyday. With agencies becoming smaller and smaller I’m realizing that more of the traditional agency rolls that used to be divided among a large pool of staff are now falling on fewer shoulders. This realization’s totally motivating me to reach out learn as much as I can from account managers, media executives and creative directors.

Expectation #4

“I’ll be protected from zombies and stuff because Copeland signed a contract with my program assuring my safety and well-being”

Actual Experience

I’d rather not comment at this point in time.

On a lighter note, the folks here at Copeland have exposed me to an incredibly broad range of industry experiences. If I could I would stay for another 6 weeks because there’s definitely way more that I need to learn. I do, however, look forward to taking this experience back to Vancouver and continue working with other agencies, and refine what I’ve learned here. Thanks again Copeland for the big push!


2 Responses to “Expectations Vs Reality”

  1. Marc April 14, 2011 at 4:41 pm #

    Now you dress more HAHA! Business. That’s a lesson in itself.

  2. dougbrowncreative April 16, 2011 at 7:38 pm #

    I wonder how many will notice the handcuffs – bloodied at that – around your wrist.

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