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My Week of Work Experience as a Graphic Designer at Vida

We welcomed Nathan Eddy, a Graphic Design student from Durham, for a week of work experience in the Vida studio.

In the last week of September 2022, the Vida studio welcomed Nathan Eddy, a Graphic Design student from Durham, for a week of work experience. He wrote a short blog about his week at Vida.

My name is Nathan Eddy, I am a Graphic Design student currently in my first year of a Foundation Degree at New College Durham. I came to Vida looking for experience with one of the fastest growing agencies in the North East. I initially sent a letter out to various agencies to try and stand out from the crowd and I was surprised to hear back from one of the largest.

It was a nervous first day, but I found Vida to be extremely accommodating. The entire team was friendly and open with me and I had daily catch-ups with two of the Designers, Beth and Dan. I was surprised to see senior staff like the Co-Founders and Design Director to be sat chatting with everyone else, which made everything feel equal.

Effective and efficient design

My time at Vida has helped me scrutinise the design cycle, not to mention my time! Dan and Beth helped me to slow things down and to get a grasp of what felt like a precise yet significant client. I found myself being overtly macro with my logo design instead of focusing on the overall emotions and identity that I was creating. I lost touch with effective design and instead tried to work on something clever. Beth and Dan helped pull me back to what really matters – effective and efficient design.

After my first logo concept presentation, I felt like I had the designs down and nailed. After hearing clarification from everyone about the overall tone and feel the brand should have, I worked on getting out as many designs as possible, which is another lesson that the Vida team has taught me. I found that only having a week with them was both a blessing and a curse.

On one hand, I only had a week to really meet and learn from everyone; on the other hand, I only had one week to create a strong and emboldened brand design. So, I had to think on my feet about what to make and what path to choose. This time constraint assisted me in choosing the most essential and contagious brand designs and brand concepts. I didn’t have time to change pathways, so I had to choose very carefully.

It was weird for me to come into an agency that has worked with some big clients like Virgin Money and UNICEF Soccer Aid and find that there were only 10 people that put all of it together. I mean everything, from brochures to billboards and websites to branding.

It really made me question the “big agency” mentality. For the first time, I saw some of the faces behind things you’d see while you drive along a motorway or in a shopping centre. It helped me see everything a little differently. Instead of seeing individuals, I saw a team that works together to get everything done.

A lot learnt

I am proud of the work that I did here. I think it’s some of the most element heavy design I have done for a brand before, which was an unexpected change of pace. It was quite funny, I did all these different experimental designs, in the end, I chose the most “boring” one at the first presentation. After I slept on it I could see the potential that they saw in the logo and I felt like this is one of the most cohesive branding pieces I have ever made.

I plan on finishing my studies and choosing a design career in branding and design. Maybe I’ll come back to Vida one day or maybe go to an agency I haven’t even seen before. I’d like to see the Vida team again someday, and work with them again.

Interested in doing work experience at Vida?

We loved having Nathan in the studio and you can check out his work on his Instagram. If you’re interested in work experience opportunities at Vida, get in touch.