This year started with mixed feelings about the new world that forms around us. We were still at the start of the pandemic when online DPS lectures started while sitting at home hoping we will start a normal year. At the end of the summer, I started applying for internships. Everyone was asking questions about how it's going, how many did I sent, and the only emotion I felt was pressure to find something immediately. I wrote more than 100 emails by the end of September and unfortunately, I haven't heard back any good news from studios during the first month so that was the time I realised that this year is going to be much harder than I anticipated it. I spent 6 months in a small town in Hungary where I struggled to keep up a positive attitude because everything seemed like a struggle. During those months I tried to stay creative and joined creative movements like the "Stay Sane, Stay Safe" poster brief. This year I want to concentrate on projects that evolves the industry through this transition. First I felt like I'm always running into a wall when I try to figure out this new normal.
Around September I started to look for a new flat so I could move back to London. After all these months, it felt like I restarted my life in London like when I first moved here. Everything seemed a bit odd like people were pretending that life went back to normal by going out, and many people weren't wearing masks like we wouldn't be still in the middle of a pandemic. It was a surreal reality like I was looking out from the inside.
In the middle of all this, I still felt relieved and productive regarding this year and DPS. The motto for these times that everything matters that are worth it. Even in the process of applying to internships, I felt like I'm learning something new that I have never done before because I was always afraid of rejection. This pandemic made one of the worst setbacks for creatives, and even the media/government projected that we should find something else "more helpful" other than arts. I found it funny that the creatives turned this message and created memes to fight back because the ads weren't even worthy enough to be taken seriously.
Last year around spring, I was remotely completing a D&AD New Blood Award Brief with three other people from LCC. That was one of the first signs for me to this whole global reset. We had to turn to unconventional solutions to complete the project, solutions like working from 3 different countries while trying to keep up a brainstorming session. This DPS year, I would like to bring the same energy and work with these creatives and bring back a community that we lost during the way. Something became definite in my life, that is the courage to say that I'm afraid of what happens next because this year feels like a trailer of 10 years of movie compilations.
End of September, I applied to a sustainable British menswear company called SIRPLUS here in London. I heard back from them after three weeks, so I thought it's going to be an "Unfortunately we Can't..." email but to my surprise they liked my work and wanted to work with me. I spent the first week in self-isolation because I just flew back from Hungary a week before. First, the adjustment was weird that I can't meet the people I work with, but everyone was welcoming. My job as a graphic intern is to design online and offline marketing and branding as well and today is my 7th week into the job, and I learned so much about commercial design. My skills in photoshop, editing, printing, photographing evolved during these weeks without me noticing. These everyday details keep me going that we can't look at everything and say it's not enough. With this opportunity, I stepped into a new world that was far out of my reach. Now I get to meet new people (safely, of course) and learn about fashion, photography, and so much more with this sustainable brand. I got to earn some knowledge on surplus materials and the history of the brand like how Henry the owner started off the brand with only selling boxers with leftover fabrics so nothing goes to waste.
Anytime I had some free time, I joined live sessions with creatives like the Adobe Max Conferences. Those talks were uplifting to learn something new and also to connect with the industry for tips and tricks. The uncertainty is always going to be there to question our choices. This year is all about growing and learning as a person, and small achievements are major accomplishments as well.
During the Wednesday classes with Sarah, we usually talk about the industry, the balance between work and free time, and these Wednesday classes are always a good way to reconnect with people from the university and talk about how we feel about this whole new industry that's everyone is uncertain about.
Since the new lockdown was announced I'm working from home and in the studio as well, but sometimes I still feel like I'm stuck. I can't complain about my living situation because I live with friends, but I still feel closed inside and struggle with these feelings. I appreciate this year and all the opportunities for internships and live briefs as well. My live brief choice is Selfridges. It's an interesting comparison between my internship as a small sustainable company that is trying to make a change step by step and between this humongous department store that can be misleading about their true intentions.
Even though I struggle with something everyday I look forward to 2021 and new opportunities for internships. For example, 2020 could be described as the worst year so far, but there are some pretty good moments as well like I had an interview with one of the Pentagram teams for a possible internship, and it made me want to achieve more goals because this studio in 2018 seemed so out of reach while still living in Hungary. The possibility of this change in 2 years really presents a huge improvement for me even during this mess around the industry.
So let's see how this new reality turns out.
GMD- Graphic and Media Design