Practicum Week 1:
Stepping into the studio of If Communications for the first time was as awkward and exciting like everyone’s first day at work. After uttering a shy “hello” to Barry, the creative director, I was introduced to the whole team and was greeted with firm handshakes and welcoming smiles. The studio is small with 8-10 people including the founding partners, Pat and Tim. Four of those people are made up of the creative team while the rest are the account team who talks directly to clients and handles the administrative stuff (I like to refer them as the “heavy lifting” team). The studio is on the second floor of the building that’s located right by the water, next to Lonsdale Quay with a beautiful view of the Vancouver skyline, but be wary of the sun as it’ll blind you completely, which is why our blinds are drawn for most of the day.
Most of the first week was spent learning my place in the office as a practicum student. After the tour of the studio by Barry, I was given a clean desk and a desktop Mac. While the work was slow for most of the first week, Barry still got me involved in client projects where I can brainstorm and do some preliminary research and I got to sit in on a meeting where Barry, Pat, and Tim came up with a list of names for a branding project to present to a client . One of the cool things is that we got someone to come into the studio to educate us about cannabis products and the market surrounding them. The last highlight of the first week was that I got to help with a mini photoshoot for a client’s social media posts. Since the studio was on the smaller side, we had to improvise a shoot and set up lights and a camera in the lounge area.
Looking back on this week, I realized a lot of things I’ve been taught at If are things that are taught in school, which is very comforting to me. While this is the lull period of the studio since they have just finished their big projects weeks prior, Barry guaranteed me more work to come in the future. This is a chance for me to find out how much I’ve learned and how to use those skills but also to find out how much I still need to learn, I’m sure there will be much more excitement in the coming weeks.