The internship is a rite of passage for every visual communication design major at Anderson University. Preparation starts in the sophomore year, as student designers develop their own visual identities. As juniors, they prepare portfolios and begin a frenzied hunt for opportunities. Because most internships take place over the summer, students hope to have their internship secured by the end of their junior year.
For this three-part series, three design majors share what they have gained from their internship experiences last summer. Earlier, Jessica Pickens described her internship with The Art Press. In part two, Derek Cox describes his internship at Vision 3 Creative, an Indianapolis agency that specializes in interactive media. [Photo: The Vision 3 office space where Cox worked; an example of the background artwork Cox worked on for the Incredibrawl card game.]
During his internship, Cox participated in two major projects, which allowed him to sharpen skills he already had and gain a few more to add to his arsenal.
One of these projects was a touch-based application that required the design of over 200 icons; Cox helped design a substantial number of those. He also worked on Incredibrawl, a card game that has recently been published by the game studio division of Vision 3.
Incredibrawl is the brainchild of Jake Leeman, the Creative Director at Vision 3; Cox assisted with the artwork design when the game was still in development over the summer.
Throughout the design of the game, Cox was a “wearer of many hats.” His responsibilities included preparing graphics for Incredibrawl’s Kickstarter and Facebook pages, designing backgrounds for some of the cards in the game, and assisting with various other parts of the design process.
In addition to the skills he gained, Cox also picked up some valuable career advice from other designers. One piece of advice, he says, is still particularly memorable: “Always do work, your work … lots of designers end up in jobs where they just slap together mediocre cliche garbage so much that it becomes the only thing they know how to do. Always look for new ways to push yourself and improve and get better at what you do, even if you have to do it in your spare time.”
Cox is grateful for how his internship has helped him fill-out his skill-set as a designer. “I was always learning because there was always something new I didn’t know how to do,” he reflects, “Vision3 helped me to gain more confidence and aptitude towards design for digital media.”
Anderson University is a private Christian university in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God (Anderson, Ind.), Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music, nursing, and theology.