Throughout my undergraduate degree in graphic design, I never knew exactly which area of graphic design I wanted to focus on. After researching the MSc Magazine Publishing course at Edinburgh Napier University and being awarded an unconditional offer of admission, my ambition in my career as an Art Editor for magazines quickly came to be. Part of the reason I applied for the course, was not only to learn different areas within the magazine industry, but also to gain some experience in the workplace as an Art Editor.
It was after reading a former students blog that inspired me to have White Light Media as my first choice for placement. Like myself her interest in the design side of the business was her main focus in magazines. She stated how she wanted to develop her creativity, and that this led to many tasks, including designing spreads for live projects. This was something I was very keen to learn myself. Her placement also allowed her to work on Hot Rum Cow, the magazine that sparked my initial interest in White Light Media. It was this similarity in developing our skills as a designer that cemented my decision to choose White Light Media as a work placement.
On the first day I was invited to attend the Monday morning briefing, a weekly occurrence, essential in showing the team what everybody is working on and how far along he or she are. It is also where individuals are assigned new projects. It was decided then that my first task would be to assist in an important project for the Edinburgh International Book Festival.
After the briefing, Managing Director Eric Campbell and I had a meeting where we decided what I wanted to learn from my time with White Light. A week before hand, Eric asked me to bring in a couple of magazines that I liked the design of, and we spent a short period of time going through them and comparing notes. We then went through a list of objectives that I wanted to achieve within my time there. I also made it clear that I wanted to learn as much as possible, and pick up any things that might be useful in my future career.
The first week of working at White Light Media was an amazing experience as I got to work on creative concepts for the brochure alongside the design team and help produce something that I can say I played a part in creating. Throughout this week, the team of designers, were always on hand if I had any questions, they continuously gave advice. The first week of my placement was exciting as on the Saturday it was World Whisky Day, and White Light had organized a whole week of events to celebrate.
In my list of key objectives I had stated that I was very eager to work on Hot Rum Cow, and the rest of the second week I got to design spreads for a couple of pages. This was a perfect task for myself as I also got to illustrate for the magazine also. Hot Rum Cow also enabled me to work with other members of the team that I hadn’t been given the chance to work with previously. All of the members of staff, which I worked alongside, taught me a variety of new aspects of design, which I can now take with me and use to help develop my career.
White Light Media was a major success as not only did I learn a vast amount of new skills, but I also got the feel of how it is to work for a magazine publisher in an office during regular working hours. The team at White Light was a pleasure to work with and they not only made me fell very welcome, but all took the time to help me grow my talents as a designer.