About The Company
I am Interning at a company named “Bionova Laboratory” which is located at 43-15 11th street Long Island City, New York 11101. This is a private company which consists of eight employees including myself. Bionova produces skincare, personal care and nutritional supplements. At my location, the testing and mixture of the formula is done. Also, when there is an order placed, it is sent from that location to the customer. There is a doctor on site with over thirty-five years of experience, he also has two lab technicians with over three years of experience.
Bionova clients are pharmacist, scientist, chemist and other persons involved in the beauty customization industry. Their customers are people who are looking for products to improve their health, wellness and lifestyle through the expansion of Bio-intelligence. Bionova was founded in 1997 by Dr. Michael M. Danielov M.D, Ph.D., Professor, to actualize his many years of research and experience in life sciences. With the help of other scientists, engineers, doctors and designers his knowledge of the human physiology bore fruit in the form of Bio-intelligence (the most revolutionary technological platform in the field of life science). In March, 2019 Dr. Danielov M.D, Ph.D. was awarded with the scientist of the year 2019 from the Society of Cosmetic Scientist in London, England for his scientific contributions in Life Science Nano-Technology.
So, in Bionova there is no graphic department, there is a marketing department, a shipping and handling department and the laboratory. I am the only graphic designer on site, so my workstation is in the conference room but the company has a freelance graphic designer they’ve been working with for the past fifteen years and his work is mostly on their website and a few presentations.
Role Within The Company
I would say I’m an entry level graphic designer at Bionova Laboratory and I’m expected to design anything that comes to mind i.e. flyer, poster, presentations and social media post. My supervisor is the Brand Strategy Director, so I guess she’s responsible for overseeing everything about the brand. For this internship, my process started through the internet by browsing through job seeking website e.g. Internship.com, Indeed.com and Glassdoor.com. I had to act fast because my internship class had started, I need to obtain 120 field hours minimum by May 3rd which seems like a lot of time but it is not factoring all of your other classes and assignments.
I applied through the websites with my resume, within three to four days I received an email acknowledging my application and being ask to attend an interview. I attended three interviews, all of them had asked for an online portfolio, so I showed it to them and they all liked it but the third interview was impressed with what the saw and we discuss what her brand is and where she wants it to go in the future. The interviewer ask how soon can I started so I told her the days and time I can work and she was fine with it. After attending the interview, I waited about a week and I received a call to start on the day I had given the interviewer.
Culture Of The Workplace
The culture attire of the workplace is informal, all the employees dresses in casual attire , I however dress with a mixture of formal and informal. Bionova Laboratory is a small company based in Long Island City tucked away in a not so big environment. The Laboratory is at the back of the building with the doctor/scientist office next to it. Off of that is my supervisor’s office with the shipping station/office next to it and oblique to that is the storing of the finished products. The conference room is at the front of the building which is where I am stationed and it also acts as the lunch room. The work time fluctuates, a few employee comes in for 9 am and the others comes in for 12 noon and for the 9am employees leaves early and the 12 noon leaves between 7-8pm. We don’t have a lunch hour like other company has but we take 20 mins to get something to eat then back to work. The overall work environment is at a medium pace and everyone is friendly.
Learning Experience About The Job
Well on my internship, I’m not learning that much because it’s not a graphic design company but I’m expanding my knowledge on layouts and placement of text and images. Also, I’m learning a few things on what it takes to run a business in the skincare industry. I am designing all projects assigned (which is everything and anything my supervisor can think of ). My day starts with working on one project and if my supervisor feels that project is not as important as the one she’s about to give me that will be on hold for now until the new one is completed. Most times I have to take work home to present a first draft the next time I go into office and there is always editing to the design, as in adding more and more text to the design which eventually turns into a regular document but I tried my best to give it a little design flair. I’m also task to perform none design work at Bionova Laboratory which I gladly perform which will help me in the future.
I have not work collaboratively with anyone on a project. I solely work on all the projects assigned with my supervisor editing the content and the design. I am the only graphic designer at my internship, so opportunity is limited. Working by yourself is a little difficult because you don’t have feedbacks from other designer that would understand your work. This is a learning experience for me because i get feedbacks from a none designer which helps me to push my creativity more than usual. One of the setback is my supervisor is accustom to designing projects using Microsoft word, so we spend longer time on editing projects.
If I were to evaluate my job performance from 1-10, I would give myself a ten or eleven. The reason is because I work on the projects extensively and even at 9 and 10 pm I’m being emailed to make changes for the next day to a work that’s been deemed finish. I work late with my supervisor whenever she asked which is most of the time. I remembered I’m being asked to create social media ads at 10 pm for the next day which I happily did because I don’t want get fired. I emailed it to her and she didn’t use them, she cancel the project. So I basically over performed at my internship.
Role Model Or Mentor
At my internship, I haven’t been to any events with Bionova Laboratory or have seen anyone as a role model, mentor or to network with. As i mention before this is a skincare company and not a graphic design company so to find someone as a role model or a mentor is a little challenging. but if you take the graphic design part out of the equation, I havent been long at this company so i not sure what to expect because everyone is trying to learning as the day goes by. It’s two different industry, so there is not that much in common but if i want to considered starting a business in the skin care industry, there are a few persons I can network with and will be willing to give advise and guide me in the right direction.
Eight – Project 1
At the company I Intern at, I’m the only graphic designer. The company has a freelancer which he is being paid to do jobs that deals with motion because he is a motion graphic designer. So after, a few weeks working on a presentation for the company inhouse use, which they are also using it for a guide book / manual, I’m not even sure what it is. The freelance graphic designer created a presentation that has motion graphics and my supervisor email me the presentation asking if I can edit it. To be honest, I was a little shock when she ask that because she knows I don’t know anything about motion graphics. I know the freelancer was getting paid to create this presentation, why isn’t he editing it. So I had to say something before I look like I don’t know what I’m doing or even get fired. So I told my supervisor, I can edit the text only, I don’t know anything about the motion graphics or how to begin editing it but I don’t think she told the freelance graphic design because I know she has to pay him for edits and she doesn’t want to. So my supervisor was left with no other option to use the same presentation for presenting to other scientist of how the company was formed in the scientific aspect.
Link to presentation PresentationAmerican2
Nine – Project 2
For my next project, I was given to task to create product sheets for four of their products. My supervisor and I had a brief discussion about the project and she also explain how she wanted the product sheet to look, so I said yes I can design a template for her to see what it looks like. So I thought to myself this was going to be an easy project or so I thought. I design a few drafts for my supervisor to have options she can choose from, so I showed it to her and she like three of the designs. After my supervisor liking three designs, she needed to choose one, so I ask her what elements she liked from each one of the designs so I can incorporate it to make one cohesive template that would be used for the product sheet and future product sheets. I designed the one product sheet template which she like the design but she said it lacks background color, this is because the template I showed her was plain white no background color. The others that my supervisor didn’t like had colors but she didn’t like them, so I ask her what colors should I take into consideration or what colors would she chooses if she had to pick one. My supervisor answer was “I don’t know” then she said “let’s use company colors”. That may sound simple or an easy fix to the problem but it isn’t, here’s why, the company has no color scheme. They mostly use black, white and red. I wasn’t sure what to do but I got an idea, so I used the same color the freelance graphic designer used on a presentation he created for them to show her how awful the design would look. As I predicted, she didn’t like it, she said it was too much, that’s because the background color was over powering the design so we went back to the plain white with a touch of red since that color on part of the logo.
After the template finished, I started to design the actual product sheet which I thought would be a walk in the park since my supervisor approved the template but I turn out to be wrong again. I showed her my design and her response was “it looked too word documented”. What does that even mean? I didn’t understand what she meant, so I told I don’t understand what she meant by that, she said there is too much space around. So what she is trying to say is that it has too much white space and I explain to white space is good, you need breathing room for the viewer so they wouldn’t feel overwhelm. My supervisor fix to this problem was to add more text to what was there which screw up the entire design until there was no design and we were just placing stuff anywhere to filled those white space. I was mad about it but I had to overcome that aspect and it’s what the client wants not me as a graphic designer. As a graphic designer, I had to make the layout look understandable, pleasing to the eye and most of all readable. I showed the layout to her and she approved it. My supervisor is accustom to use Microsoft word and placing stuff on it because they didn’t had a inhouse graphic designer before to explain or show her the design principles.
Ten – Project 3
My next assignment, I was assigned to create multiple social media templates for the company to use now and for future projects. My Internship would be coming to an end in a few weeks so I think this would be my last project. My supervisor and I discuss the details about this project and what she wanted. As, discussing I explained to her how social media ads are designed to capture the viewers eyes and intrigue them to read more or find out more about the company and what product or service it offers and she agrees. I was basically trying to tell her that it needs to be simple and allot less word documented. I design the first three templates and it was a success, I was so happy about this because something actually went my way. As I was going to start the others, my supervisor ask me to stop designing and go help out in the packaging and shipping department because the staff that was carrying out that duty was out with the flu
At first, I was intimidated by the task because I haven’t done anything like that before and I was afraid I would screw up or mishandle an order. I was guided by the staff that was out sick on what to do on a step by step process which was emailed to me. As I carried each step I verified with my supervisor which she gave me the final approval to send to the post office. It was a great day working in that department, it gives me a little relaxing time from the design aspect. For the rest of the week, I worked in the packaging and shipping department which made my supervisor happy and relieved that I was able to help her out in that department, with her busy schedule it would have been overwhelming for her.
In my Internship, I can safely say I learned a few things and what to expect in a professional working environment.
I’ve learned how to handle positive and negative feedbacks. It thought me how to accept the feedback and it wouldn’t hurt to push my creativity in my work a little more. I also learn from my supervisor how to deal with a frustrated employee, the way she handle the situation and the employee in a professional manner.
I was also given the opportunity to work in their packaging and shipping department which give me the additional skill set for my future. I took that assignment as a learning opportunity which i was excited. My supervisor was surprised how fast i learn the job and i carry out the task exceptionally well.
I also learn time management. I was given a specific time for each project which had to be done because the projects have to be presented to other senior officials. Also, by working along side my supervisor and taking feedbacks, I was able to push my creative level a little more.
A) In terms of ethical guidelines discussed in the AIGA guide, my internship was at a Skincare Laboratory and everything I did I created. Also, every piece of document that its being used for in house purposes or for customers it is being created by a graphic designer. The company has a freelance graphic design that they paid for the photography of their product, so they company has the right to use it and everything that is created they have the copyright to that image. The company does not use any images from the internet.
B) I did not sign any confidentiality or non-disclosure agreement for my internship. If I was in a situation where I would be signing one, before signing it, I would inform /ask my supervisor that I would need to show the work I created for my class presentation. Out of respect for the company and myself and also not be in a legal battle I would ask permission before I used anything I created for the company. Since I didn’t sign any confidentiality or non-disclosure agreement I was in the clear but for my safety I asked my supervisor if I can use the work I created in my class presentation and portfolio and she give me the permission to use the work.
A) Whether I design for class work or freelance I create all my artwork and design pieces. I use other artist work as inspiration to have my creative juice flowing. I remember I had a class a few years ago and our professor give us a lecture of what to do and what not to do as a designer. In that lecturer giving credit was one of the topic discuss, as a class the professor instructed us to always give credit if we use any other artist work or photography because if we don’t we would end up in a legal battle and it will also ruin our career. No one would hire an artist who takes other artist work and claim it as theirs, we would be deem not worthy or untruthful. So when I used photography that is not mine, I always give credit at the bottom of the photograph.
B) The Fairey Copyright case is an eye opener to all graphic designers and designers in general. Mr. Fairey in his own words: “I wanted it to be a portrait that was political in nature and that would deracialize Mr. Obama [by using] a red, white, and blue color palette that was patriotic. I also wanted to capture a pose in Mr. Obama that was a classic political pose, something that would elevatehim to iconic status in the vein of people who had [preceded] him and were held in high regard in politics.” Mr. Fairey thought he could have gotten away with using the picture and editing it in the photoshop program. He also lied about using another image, which he couldn’t prove and he also destroyed evidence to prove his theory.
In the New York Times article Mr. Fairey admitted later in the case that he had been mistaken and he had tried to cover up his mistake. He also pleaded guilty and said he was “ashamed” of his actions. All he was trying to do “the ability of artists everywhere to be inspired and freely create art without reprisal.”
In my opinion, as a well establish graphic designer as Mr Fairey, he should have known about the copyright laws and profiting from other people work. Mr. Fairey should have given credit or ask permission to use the photograph because the fact is he used some photography to create his work, without that photograph his design piece wouldn’t even exist. I am happy the parties reach an agreement to share rights to the “Hope” image. The most important take away from this case is to always give credit or ask permission from the artist even if you have to pay to use it.