Lydia Rae Haworth describes her experience of interning at MTV UK
Trained in fine art, Lydia Rae Haworth didn’t believe she could make creativity part of her day job until landing a creative design internship at MTV. Alongside the task of creating a moving graphic, Lydia nailed the interview, showing eagerness to learn and ask for advice. Now designing digital graphics for promos and shows, Lydia is sharpening her skills, learning by doing and finding her comfort zone.
Lydia Rae Haworth
Creative Design Intern at MTV
New Business Executive, DigitasLBi (2017)
Office Temp, Kitcatt Nohr + DigitasLBi (2015–2017)
BA Fine Art, Goldsmiths University of London (2010–2013)
How did you land the internship at MTV?
A friend recommended MTV, knowing they had a great internship scheme, and so I applied. I’d been working in creative environments but wasn’t in a creative role and I really wanted to be. My background is in fine art and I illustrate in my spare time. I didn’t have much design experience, so an internship seemed like the best way for me to learn from the ground up.
After applying with my CV and portfolio, I was asked to create a five-second moving graphic. I’d never touched After Effects before, so I spent a lot of time researching tutorials, asking friend’s advice and eventually just went for it!
At the interview we were asked to present our work in a group of about 8 to 10 other applicants, all of whom I was certain were more talented than me. But I felt more at ease in the following individual interviews, and expressed my willingness to learn, which I guess worked out!
“I didn’t have much design experience, so an internship seemed the best way to learn from the ground up.”
What does a typical working day look like?
It sounds cliché, but every day is different. A launch campaign for a new show can have a lot of deliverables, so our design team will be divided up to tackle different aspects.
Some days I can be working closely with a producer to design graphics for on-air and social marketing promos. And some days I’ll design endboards [a short video or picture logo appearing before or after a programme] and straps for new shows, add graphics to key art, or design for digital out of home screens, there’s a lot of variety.
Financially, London can be a tough city to intern in – has this been a challenge?
The internship pays the London Living wage, so thankfully it hasn’t been too much of struggle. I’ve been paid a lot less in previous jobs here in London, so I’ve learnt to be somewhat scrupulous with money (and I know where the £4.50 cinema tickets are at).
Is working within the company what you expected?
It’s better! A lot of the time I forget I’m an intern. I feel like a part of the team. I’ve gained so much insight into this industry and vastly improved my knowledge of design and animation. On top of that, I’ve met amazing people who are really inspiring.
How I Got Here
How would you describe your start in the industry?
It’s been a whirlwind! I feel lucky to have been given this opportunity because for such a long time I thought I’d never be in a creative role as my ‘day job’.
One of my biggest challenges has been having the confidence to know that I am good enough to be here, and not being afraid to ask for advice when I need it. That and learning the inner-workings of After Effects, because there’s always more to know! I’m also getting to grips with the terminology now, which is where equations finally make a comeback in my life.
“One of my biggest challenges has been having the confidence to know that I am good enough to be here.”
Words of Wisdom
What would your tips be on choosing the right internship, and making it worthwhile?
It’s good to look at the internship and ask yourself: Am I going to gain the knowledge I want from this? Because it’s truly what you make of it. I didn’t believe I had the skills required, but I knew I had the drive to learn. I spend any free work-time doing tutorials, asking questions and absorbing everything I can. Everyone is willing to help if you ask, you have to be bold and go for it!
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