Know Your Allies

The idea of a placement is that you get hands on experience in a real work environment. Though this perhaps could mean that there are no safety nets, you are also open to a lot of helpful people, but you need to learn who they are. In my placement so far, I have found that just because someone had a specific job title and you are an intern, it doesn’t mean that they (a) have the time to explain something or (b) are good at explaining things.

I have learnt a lot in the past few months but the biggest thing I have learnt so far, is who to go to if I need a hand in a specific field. Inside the office, there are specific people that are available to me when I need to ask questions. Though I have almost two full notebooks already of ‘how to’s’, ‘advice’ and ‘reminders’ it is clear that by the time I get back to university I will be better at asking for help.

As an independent and proud person, I have always struggled to ask for help, but here, there isn’t much of an option. Though I do some research outside of the work place, an internship is for asking questions, learning and applying knowledge. Perhaps the main focus of an internship is not necessarily teaching someone skills, but perhaps it is more for encouraging and learning how to apply skills as well as learning being a humbling experience.

By asking questions, you not only learn how to do things, but you can also build key relationships with members of staff. Here at BWAR, I have manages to gain a lot of insight in not only how apps and websites are built, but also a lot outside of my field. On a daily basis, I not only deal with customers, but I can also be learning about how to adjust simple CSS and so on.

The staff here are encouraging and understand that everything is a learning curve. Everyone here has multiple job roles and can do many diverse jobs in one day. From tech support to app creation, there is a lot that each member of staff can do. This also means that should one individual be busy, as this is a quick paced environment and also only a small business, someone else can help me. Though I am still learning, I aspire to be like them. A diverse job role, such as this one can aide in future prospects.

With no two days being the same, the learning potential here does not have a limit as such, the limit is merely in what questions I ask. As the weeks go on, I know that I will never stop learning, whether it is the meaning of key words or how to deal with an awkward customer.

Live Brief: University Promo

We were each given a statistic for our university, Huddersfield, and told to make a ten second, simple animation in university colours. This project was done under stict time restraints (4hours).

After two quick Adobe Illustrator file creations, this is the final outcome:

Concepts

Although the Cotton Factory has shut down, the company who own it are confident they could be reopening it in the future, the owners of the building have given us permission to continue using the venue as a case study.

With this in mind, we have practically been granted freedom to redesign the whole of the Cotton Factory. We can choose a new audience, whilst keeping the area in mind and the bigger brand who owns the company, and change it into a more specific venue. This place was branded as a pizza kitchen, bar, sports bar, night club, restaurant and cocktail bar. This means that we can choose a concept to rebrand it as, from the concepts we came up with as a group, above.

I, personally, will be investgating the concept of making it both a restaurant and a nightclub/bar, as it originally was, whilst the rest of my colleagues explore the possibilities of it just being a bar, restaurant and a historic venue. When we come back we will decide which directions we want to branch off into.

Huddersfield ReBrand: Initial Ideas

After working as a group to produce a few mood boards, we then went our seprate ways in order to produce our own individual research and ideas. Here is some initial ideas for the re branding the company we have chosen: Cotton Factory.

Lessons From TomSka

The wonderful TomSka is certainly a man to keep an eye out for on Youtube. Though he may specialise in comedy, he does say a lot of things that make sense. The video above, for example, can be applied to any aspirations, not on Video Making. The points he makes are designed to aid creatives to work to the best of their ability. TomSka is a motivational speaker in this video. Giving his advise, as a successful Youtuber, he explains ‘how to Youtube’, stating but obvious and the not so obvious. It is key to get advise from people already in the industry.

Point One: Watch and Learn

Although plagiarism is bad, as I argued in my final essay last academic year, there is no such thing as an original idea in the world. Everything has just been re-imagined from an initial idea, or many ideas. TomSka advises to watch and learn from other people’s success and failures. Questioning why something worked, or didn’t, can help in your own professional development. Many businesses that are a part of a oligopoly, all learn from each other. Main supermarket chains for example. When one, I think it was Tesco, stated that they were ‘x’ amount cheaper than it’s competitors, all other supermarket chains started to catch on with this strategy for marketing, stating that they’d pay back the difference and so on. To get ahead you need to know your competitors and how to exploit their gains and failures to your advantages.

Point Two: Who Are You?

In days of late at university, lecturers have been pushing for us to be able to sell ourselves, and to brand ourselves. Curriculum Vitaes are the business versions of first impressions. If you were to create a company, the name would need to be catchy, memorable. When selling yourself, you need to be different.

Part Three: Secondary Channel

Testing ideas or voicing stuff that isn’t necessarily related to what you do on a specific blog, may better be suited in another medium. For us, creating two blogs side by side is an idea, but now with the help of categorising, we could just separate it like that. In referring back to our first impressions to industry, perhaps our flaws and personal interests would help an employer understand who they are employing. After all, nobody wants to hire a narcissist who is a bit too perfect. On an alternative note, we need to be able to take criticism. We will inevitably make mistakes in out practise but if we didn’t we would never be able to grow and flourish.

Part Four: Getting Started

As we probably all know by now, the equipment list that was given to us at the start of our first year was practically useless. We didn’t really use everything. I believe that we should get what we need when we need it. As a student, on a tight budget, it is safe to say that we never want to waste money. Macs too are very expensive, and even though they are industry standard, we can’t all afford them, even with a student discount. For this reason, I am thankful the studios are open until stupid o’clock and that I can run a Mac OS off of my beautiful Windows system.

Part Five: Originality

Be different. Be You. Enough said.

Part Six: First Impressions

When someone sees our blogs or portfolios, they have an insight into how our minds judge our creativity. I know that at the beginning of last year we were all told to use a set theme for WordPress, so everyone’s looked like everyone else’s. This year, thank goodness, we can adjust that and have something a little more professional, that doesn’t resemble a twelve year old’s blog diary about her love of emo and scene guys.

Part Seven: Herding

Many people have links to other media on their original posts. I own a facebook page, which I advertise my blog on. If you scroll through my blog, you will also notice I am on Instagram. I think it is important to have several different media to work with, especially if you want to describe yourself as a person and as an artist, keeping your lives separate.

Part Eight: Money

Although, as a graphic design student, I may not make Youtube videos, it is safe to say that money will always be the pinnacle of survival. TomSka warns us to always read before we sign up to things. The worlds biggest lie is probably, “I have read and Agree to the Terms and Conditions”, but when it comes to contracts, we need to be careful.

Part Nine: Getting Noticed

TomSka points out the necessity to be nice to people and to work as a team. Although leadership skills and being able to work independently can often help in a work place, it is also key that you are able to collaborate with other people. No one person can do everything. If you need help, ask for it.

Part Ten: Survival

Never lose yourself in the industry. Do not become a sheep. Do not let fame and fortune go to your head. In the words of the late and great Mufassa from Lion King: “Remember Who You Are.”