I'm only two weeks into my first internship and only 2 months into DPS so far. I’m interning in the in-house design agency for the Ministry of Justice, where they focus on social design. I thought I would feel like a fish out of water interning in a design office full time, i’ve never had any sort of creative work experience so my nerves were absolutely sky high on my first day. I had absolutely no idea what to expect in terms of people, work, and my general role in the company.
A few things that have surprised me about this experience in my first two weeks:
But, i'm not finding it very stimulating.
It has a lot of many pros, and I don’t necessarily dislike the work I’m doing, it’s just that i’ve realised social design isn’t really what I want to do as a career. I absolutely love creating design for change and problem solving, but something about creating data visualisation logos all day just isn’t getting me out of bed in the morning. I ended up at this job because a majority of my portfolio is social design based, so I thought it was well suited to a job like this. I definitely found myself getting upset and self doubting my talents, thinking to myself 'some people are abroad or working at cool branding companies right now and what am I doing?' So what’s surprised me about social design is that, in short, is that I don’t love it.
Another social design company offered me a paid 4 month internship to start in January, but ended up emailing me last week to let me know they were hiring a junior and can’t afford to pay an intern. Surprisingly, even though that meant I had no solid plans for my next internship I have to admit i was kind of relieved. It means all of my 2020 is free for me to hopefully find something I will enjoy and get some different experience to compare, and figure out what I want to do.
I was initially really scared to leave my comfort zone when DPS started, and I said to myself ‘I’m definitely going to look for an easy internship in London’ but i’ve definitely now realised that not everyone gets the opportunity to take a year out of uni, and I want to make the most of it. Instead of looking at job openings for cool companies abroad and thinking ‘I shouldn’t even bother applying because its too far/I wont get the job’ I’m going to take the plunge and just do it.
Its daunting thinking about what i’m going to do for most of 2020, but I’ve got plans to spend as much free time as I can working on my 3D skills and creating some work for my portfolio, and apply for internships in branding/design studios that I admire. My aim is to go back to uni in October feeling more confident as a designer.