Does a work experience week conjure up boring images of making cups of tea and doodling on post-it notes? Not at DS.E. Here, we give our interns a useful and interesting training programme, complete with enjoyable tasks and mentoring sessions to help the week fly by. We gave our intern, Imogen, a relevant sample brief that closely simulated the work we do for our clients. So how did she find her week with us?
Finding work experience
After being told by school back in September that it was a compulsory requirement for us all to find ourselves work experience in the last week of term, we were all quite apprehensive and so settled on the decision to forget all about it. Soon enough it came to November and my parents kindly informed me (not for the first time) that I was very busy until June and that everyone would be looking for work experience around the same dates, so I should probably make a start on looking for mine.
At this point, I had no idea about what I would actually enjoy doing – I just wanted it to be enjoyable. Mum suggested I contact DS.Emotion and, thankfully, when I emailed they accepted my request and told me they were looking forward to seeing me in June.
Joining the team
The end of June came around very quickly. I got on the train on Monday morning, Google Maps at the ready, prepared for whatever the day would throw at me.
From the minute I arrived I was included as if I was part of the team. The first thing I did was join a meeting to discuss a live brief that had only just been received. I was given some research tasks from that meeting, which I enjoyed working on. I was treated as a valued member of the workplace once more that afternoon when I got to share my research with other members of the team.
On Tuesday morning I was given my own brief, specifically created by the DS.Emotion team to give me an example of the kind of work I could expect to work on with clients. I was asked to design a campaign, including advertising and street art, which would help regenerate South Bank Leeds by attracting companies from the creative sector to move to Leeds or relocate from other areas in the city. I spent the day researching what makes up a creative hub and where they were. Once I had completed my initial research, I took to completing a mood board of creative places and a pen portrait of what the traditional worker in this area might be like.
When I came back into the office on Wednesday morning I was only there for a short time as I was tasked with photographing the local area for signs of creativity, such as street art, architecture, inspiring people and much more. This gave me a great chance to discover and appreciate parts of Leeds I’ve never seen before such as the new painted road crossing outside the Tetley building.
For the rest of Wednesday I started to create ideas for an advertising campaign to try and attract more creative companies to South Bank Leeds. I considered ideas that could run through my campaign, plus photography and typography styles.
Learning new skills
On Thursday morning I was given basic Illustrator training, and followed some video tutorials to learn how to create different things. Once I had at least started to understand what I was doing I began to design a digital idea of what I was planning on Tuesday afternoon. Following an afternoon’s work I had created a logo for my rebrand.
I was looking forward to Friday, my last day with DS.Emotion, and it didn’t disappoint. After designing my logo on Thursday afternoon I put it to use on Friday by editing it slightly so I could use it on different types of media such as badges, billboards and websites.
I then designed a piece of street art for a road to try and attract people’s attention to the rebranding of South Bank Leeds.
During the week I learnt about advertising the rebrand through all different types of media. My final challenge was to make a radio advert. See my proposed script below:
“Art changes people, and people change the world. The arts include and cover several areas but here at South Bank Leeds we would love to house them all. South Bank Leeds, when fully completed, will double the size of the city centre, bring communities together, include a world-class waterfront, a huge new park and much more. On top of all this it is already home to several creative companies. We are now urging others to come and base yourselves and your companies in the heart of creation and imagination. Join us on the South Bank where we are creating what we wish existed.”
A valuable week
After a week of research, planning, designing, creating, and learning a lot, I now have a love for an area that a week ago I knew nothing about. The experiences I have had this week are invaluable and I have learnt several new skills as well as having a lot of fun along the way.
Thank you to the Leeds team at DS.Emotion for a great week and for making me feel completely included. You have definitely made my week of work experience far better than expected and much more enjoyable than I could have ever imagined.