Intern Insight: My Internship Experience
Words by Georgie Blank
A mandatory requirement as part of being a student at The Fashion Institute is that all students must undertake an internship. Being able to gain real life experience is the best way to learn the ropes of the fashion industry. Another important aspect of interning is to able to breakdown any preconceived ideas and learn how the industry operates.
I was beyond ecstatic when my TFI’s Careers Manager was able to land me a trial at Pacific Magazines. Print media I believe was the first form of media I learned to love and appreciate. As a kid I always enjoyed going grocery shopping with my parents because it meant that I could sneak away to the magazine section and get lost in the pages. In my teenager years I spent many recesses, lunches and occasional free periods going to the school library and reading the magazines they had on the shelves. Although, it sounds cheesy writing it, I have a connection with magazines that started in my childhood and continue to this day.
The trial was successful, and I was invited back to continue as an intern. I spent 6 weeks interning at Pacific Magazines. My internship was unfortunately cut short due to Covid-19. Although my time was cut short, I did manage to learn a lot on a professional and personal level.
A typical day for me at Pacific Magazine was to start by doing the fashion returns. To my surprise there is not a massive fashion cupboard filled with clothing and accessories like there is in movies such as The Devil Wears Prada. All clothing, shoes and accessories have to be returned to the Public Relations Agency or clothing brand they came from.
After completing the returns, I would sit down with my supervisor Paige (Fashion Editor of Who Magazine, That’s Life and Girlfriend Magazine) and assist her. The main magazine we worked on was the winter issue of Girlfriend Magazine. I was very fortunate to have begun my internship at a time when the planning for the issue had commenced. To be a part of the creation of fashion spreads and a photoshoot from start to finished was insightful and exciting and for me.
We created a “steal their style” fashion spread on the four main female characters from the hit HBO drama series Euphoria starring Zendaya.
A breakdown of how this fashion spread was created:
I wrote down a list of brands that are popular among teenagers.
Paige and I did a “PR call out” asking the brands to forward to us any flat lay images of clothing and accessories they were still intending to stock during the winter issue release that matched the four characters styles.
Clothing and accessories were selected to be featured in the magazine.
Find photos that can legally be featured in the magazine via sites such as Getty Images or through the TV show or Actresses social accounts
Send the spread over to the graphic design department.
The finished result…
We had a lot of difficulty finding an image of Maddy in the purple dress, but we found it in the end!
The next major project I was able to assist on was a photoshoot for Girlfriend magazine, inspired by jacket and coat trends. I had two main jobs for this, the first was to create a mood board of 8 potential jackets and coat styles to use for the shoot. The second was to find graphic designers and artists to create 8 different prints to be used as wallpaper.
I was lucky enough to be present at the photoshoot for a few hours, before I had to high tale it back to the city to make it in time for class at The Fashion Institute. That scenario I never imagined I would be fortunate to experience and I felt like I was in my own teen drama series, minus the boy problems and I felt exhilarated.
The Winter Issue of Girlfriend Magazine is on sale now, and I’m super proud to be able to share the work I did for Girlfriend. My name being in print in a magazine I grew up reading is a cool memento I will cherish forever.
I am very fortunate to have been given the experience of sharing some insight into my internship experience with my fellow class members or future students of The Fashion Institute who may be interested in interning for a magazine. However, I did learn one thing on a personal note that I believe is as equally as valuable as the lesson and experience I had on a professional level, and that is self -confidence. We all need to believe in ourselves and have the courage to push ahead.
Leading up to my trial, I was plagued with the feeling of self-doubt. I began doubting myself to the point where I questioned whether I should even do the trial. Unfortunately, we all have self-doubt, but my internship and The Fashion Institute has taught me to believe in myself. It is always better to make a decision, rightly or wrongly, then to do nothing. It is also often the reason why we decide to hold ourselves back, thereby preventing ourselves from experiencing new opportunities.
If you can take one thing away from this blog post, is to not let self-doubt get in the way of holding yourself back from new opportunities. I was on the verge of holding myself back, thankfully I didn’t. It is common knowledge that our minds can play havoc. It is not “obnoxious” or “conceited” to back yourself, but having the confidence and ambition, is an asset which enables us to strive to reach our full potential.
I would like to say a massive thank you to Pacific Magazines and The Fashion Institute for the opportunity to have had that experience.