18th January 2019

Four Months In: A Catch up with Silver Intern, Charlie Gilks

Already a third of the way through his time with us, we caught up with Charlie to see how he’s found the first four months at Silver. 

From maths to marketing
Design at Brunel is widely regarded as one of the top courses of its kind in the country, owing to the staff, facilities and of course our famous showcase: Made in Brunel. The first two years of the course provide a springboard to success for the placement year, however and wherever you decide to spend it.
Coming from a maths-centred school experience and a science-based course to a creative year in industry at a branding and marketing communications agency, there were many words I could have used to describe my headspace in the lead-up to day one; the most appropriate of which: nervous.
Would I find my feet at in an office that had never previously employed an intern? Would my extroverted nature be a drain on my colleagues? Would my software skills hold up? Am I creative enough?
Settling in
The first few weeks were full on, with both sides of the table finding their feet. Silver’s management team evaluated my skillset and my creative processes, whilst I became familiar with the team and the creative agency process, on top of shadowing various senior members through their schedules.
My confidence developed with each passing day through exposure to all aspects of the design process. I can’t express how much a healthy working environment can benefit someone, both on a professional and a personal level. The open plan layout and the pull-up-a-chair nature of the office makes for insightful conversation and knowledge-sharing, the likes of which I hadn’t experienced before. Soon enough, I decided that the best course of action was to not hold back; just be myself and take everything as it comes.
A well-rounded experience
Despite appearing relatively concise on paper, the nature of my role was becoming much more elastic than I had anticipated. Having the opportunity to work in the Creative, Motion and Digital departments provided a sense of freedom to work towards becoming the designer that I want to be; not just another product of the system.
Since those first few weeks of acclimatization, I have worked on a large number of briefs, both internal and from a host of clients including Dell EMC, Sitecore and Kongs. The nature of these projects has covered artworking, development of visuals, idea generation, research and much more.
All of this, alongside a curated LinkedIn Learning pathway, has empowered me to develop a huge variety of skills and apply them wherever I can. Those initial worries have completely dissipated, and my background has benefitted Silver in more ways than either party anticipated due to the differences in my creative nature to those around me.
Made in Brunel; developed at Silver
The first four months of my internship have absolutely flown by, and yes – I’ve been having fun. It’s more than that though. Silver operates with ruthless consistency, and my time here has done wonders for my time management and creative thought processes.
Being surrounded by highly-driven individuals has caused me to strive to never be the limiting factor, and I’m encouraged by two things: the frequency of this being the case dropping, and one of my internship goals being to lead two projects during my time here.
Silver, you’ve been a dream – here’s to the next 8 months.