Entry #4: Workplace Culture

The workplace was very laid-back but serious at the same time. We could joke and talk about how our days were and ask about each other’s issues (As long as it was appropriate). Most of us know each other’s family and have met my boss’s family on more than one occasion. Typically we get in at 10 am if we don’t have a show to do that more or the afternoon, and around 12-1pm we have lunch. The day usually ending at 4pm for a regular day in the office. We communicate face-to-face, by texting or emailing about work. We use G-Mail Workspace for projects, Google Drive is where all of our projects go to keep them in one place on a shared company drive.

If there is a performance for the day we meet where the performance is until it starts and if we’re not needed to do production work we leave for the day.

Entry #9: Role Models, Mentors and Networks

The Exec. Artistic Director, Jamel Gaines, is who I would consider my mentor in and outside of the internship. He’s taught me a lot about the dance/theater world and how to deal with people whom he calls “Divas”. He gave me guidance on the projects I was doing to make sure it had an artistic touch to it so it could attract more people who would be interested in seeing his showcase. There was a completely dirreferent way to design flyers with dancers apart of it. I learned that cutting out the foot, no matter how much, is a big no no. The body is the most important focal point for flyers and social media posts, and text should only be used if necessary. For example, the title of the show and the name of the company. From the photos to the body copy language he taught me how to translate his vision of his company into cohesive designs that speak for themselves.

The most tedious part of this process was sitting with him and finding the perfect photo. Photos I liked, he didn’t enjoy because of the way the photo was taken or because of the pose the dancer was in and photos he liked I had a hard time working with them because there wasn’t enough space to work or the photo was difficult to edit and was time consuming.

Overall, I have to thank Mr. Gaines for helping guide me through this process because eventually, I produced something that he loved and can use for future years to come (If he doesn’t find a better photo he likes).

Entry #8: Final Days of Internship

For the final days of my internship, I started some draft projects that I never got to finish and decided to do them over the summer when I had more free time in the office.

For the project I want to finish I need to make a promo reel of the Remembering showcase. The current one in the company is about 14 years old and I asked if it was possible to make a new one. So, over the summer myself, and my coworker will be working on that! Overall, I believe I did a great job with my internship. I designed some new material for the company and it was great to be designing again. I wish I could have done more and not have spent so much time on making instagram content. My supervisor told me that he was proud of what I did and that the material will definitively last on the long run.

Cooper Hewitt Museum

Ironically enough, this is my first time at the Cooper Hewitt Museum. This was an exciting day for me to finally make it to this museum with my busy schedule lately. This small museum held so much character to me, the layout and the interactive features were nice to see. It makes you realize that design isn’t purely a poster hung up. This chair, as seen above, is called the Savage Chair. Fully composed of found household objects and discarded items that Jay Sae Jung hand-wrapped in leather cord. I enjoyed seeing this chair because at first, I thought it was 3D printed and I wanted to find out how to get one for my future self! Finding out this was made purely of household items and other things Jung found discarded and then hand-wrapped was a surprise. It’s truly a beautiful design and looks so organic in person that you probably wouldn’t guess a human made it.

This poster by Faith Ringgold was also another one of my favorites. The message behind this poster is inspiring. The rallying cry for women in prison by calling for reform is admirable. Posters have always been a call to action for me growing up. Every time I encountered one was to rally the local people to change policies in New York or to call for a stop in an ongoing war overseas. The colors reminded me of the African American flag and that’s what caught my attention first.

Entry #7

My next task was to help make instagram content for our upcoming summer intensive and go to rehearsals to record. The company had an arts in education show at the Apollo in the beginning of May, I was tasked with going there for my full-time responsibilities. I had to make sure the technicians and the stage manager had everything from the company from visuals to music. Simultaneously, I was taking videos and posting on our instagram to document and promote the upcoming show.

Entry #6

My first task was to redo an old flyer of the companies and present it to our Executive Artistic Dir., I wanted to see what other dance companies are doing regarding their digital and social media posts for their presentations. I took inspiration from companies like Dance Theater of Harlem and Alvin Ailey. Usually when I need a moodboard for certain types of designs I head over to Pinterest for them.

There was one photo that the Director loved to use when it came to the Black History presentation so I started with that and designed around it. Doing this part was a challenge because the company doesn’t have branding guidelines, so I had to work with the logo and the font within the logo. I had give it my design twist while not making it look like a rip off of all the other flyers I took inspiration from.

Overall the final product looked amazing and my boss loved it. There are some people that like the older flyer better and I understand why but I wanted people to be interested in coming to see the show not knowing what to expect.

Entry #5

I chose to do my internship at a company I already work for because I was originally applying for said internship when I first started in 2019 but ultimately I was needed in other areas of the company that my boss wanted me to help with. Even though I had to continue with my previous duties at the company I was able to balance out my time since most of my old responsibilities were straightforward and I have been doing it for a little over 2 years now out of the 5 I’ve been with the company.

My boss explained I would be making content and graphics so social media and new flyers for our annual performances and anything that was new, for example, gigs that we get booked for and promotion is needed. My supervisor is Noe Garcia and he’s the Arts in Education coordinator for the company and he does other things within the company as well aside from Arts in Education.

Entry #3

Before I took on my new job responsibilities for my internship, I am the Production Assistant for my Exec. Artistic Director Jamel Gaines. We had an amazing opportunity to go to Accra and Cape Coast in Ghana for a performance! We left after our annual Black History Performance at BAM Fisher. We stayed there for 9 days, experiencing Ghana’s culture and then doing a cultural exchange between our dance theater and their national dance theater, as well as the local universities.

Making sure everything was running smooth with music and the visuals for the production was my responsibility, since the production was multimedia I was to make sure all of the pieces of media were cohesive and changed on cue. All of this had to be done manually, so I was on the projector and changing it like a slideshow while the Mr. Gaines was on the audio but we couldn’t see each other during the show but I have seen his piece about 50+ times in the last 5 years so it wasn’t too complicated to doing timing with each other.