It’s now halfway through the three month summer internship here at 4c. So in the positivity of Glasgow’s post-Commonwealth buzz, I thought I’d reflect on some things I’ve been involved in during these first 6 weeks.
There were certain areas I was keen to learn more about: research and user testing, team-based projects, design strategy and business. The team have been very accommodating by including me on lots of relevant and interesting projects, as well as giving up their time to help me develop my skill base. There have been one-to-one Solidworks tutorials as well as TIG welding sessions, which I hope to keep practicing over the next few weeks!
My prior year in industry has given me great experience speaking to, and designing alongside, end users. I enjoy nothing more than trying out ideas and getting feedback from the ‘real world’ in all its constraints and complications. A core part of my work at 4c has been research and testing secret(!) prototypes across several different projects. This has only fuelled my enthusiasm for working directly with people, and has given me the chance to develop skills recording, editing and presenting.
Consultancy work is completely new to me, and working with clients, quotes and briefs has opened my eyes to design as a business. I’ve been working on illustrations to visualise in-house processes, presenting abstract information in clear pathways. This has given me the opportunity to consider the design of a system in the same way I would a product, and explore design’s role in communicating and consuming information across different mediums.
I’ve been working on some design strategy too, in anticipation of 4c’s upcoming Kickstarter project. It’s very exciting to be part of the research and planning, learning about the back-end work that goes into presenting a compelling campaign and the continuous editing that goes into writing copy! Please keep an eye out in the coming weeks for the launch of this very exciting product.
There’s a great team culture here, and it’s been fantastic to be part of some fast-paced brainstorming sessions. With post-its and cookies flying around, I’ve learnt a lot of new techniques for developing ideas in bigger groups, whilst keeping on topic and building on the thought trails of other people. The live projects range from medical devices to experiential brand products to agriculture; there’s no end of interesting conversations that float around the office and workshop that can be soaked up.
There’s a great deal more I’d like to squeeze out of the team’s collective brain before I head back to university; I have no doubt the next 6 weeks will pack in just as much as the first.