My name is Olivia Johnson, and I am a graphic design major, who’s just entering my junior year at MICA. During the summer of 2014, I completed an internship with Feats Inc, a Baltimore based events company. I first heard about Feats through MICA’s Career and Internships Fair in the early spring. Before the fair, I made sure I was completely prepared, with my digital portfolio compiled, my resume updated, and my business cards printed. I also emailed the designers at Feats before the fair so they already knew my name and had a quick look at my skills and expertise. It also didn’t hurt that I held a work-study position at MICA’s own Office of Events, which showed that I already had a little experience working within the events industry. After the Career Fair, I made sure to send a thank you note to Lea and Danielle, the designers who interviewed me. After a few days, I got a call from Feats, offering me the position!
Danielle Nekimken, the Creative Director at Feats, was my main supervisor, though Lea Hebert was also responsible for assigning many of my projects. While interning, I had a pretty diverse assortment of projects. I spent a great deal of time design a program booklet for the National Academy Foundation’s event in June. I also did a lot of research and designing for the Horseshoe Casino grand opening in July and August. When Feats didn’t have many events going on, I mostly worked on internal assignments. The company is going through a brand refreshment, so I helped out with tweaking the letterheads, envelopes, thank you cards, and other print collateral. I am proud of the projects that were actually used in events, because it made me feel like a valuable part of the Feats team. Specifically, I enjoyed working on creating patterns and 3d materials for the Horseshoe Casino. It’s so amazing experiencing the process of first creating simple mock-ups to sending a design to a fabricator. That’s definitely different from having to do everything by my own hand while in school.
The most valuable thing I learned while working at Feats was that many clients are relatively conservative, and it’s more important to design things around the big picture rather than focusing each small detail at a time. Stepping away from my personal design taste was a challenge, but is such an important thing to be able to do when working with corporate clients.
After experiencing yet another foray into the events industry, I’m still torn as to whether it’s the direction I want to be taking my career. I love the excitement of the industry, but I think that some of the projects can get a little repetitive, because of how specific of a field it is. That being said, I would still love to continue to design for events, but also have the opportunity to work on different types of projects as well. Overall, interning for Feats has been an incredible fulfilling experience, and I recommend the position looking to broaden their design skills and knowledge.