some things I learned at my first design internship. some things I learned at my first design internship.  Before I walked into Potion on my first day as their new design intern, I watched John Maeda’s Skillshare class about 6 times over and over again, and in that class John's first piece of advice for being creative was to always have both audacity and courage.  Helping concept, create, and document projects, I was very often reminded of the importance of those two characteristics. With that being said, here are a few things I learned while I tried to be audacious and courageous as a design intern at Potion. Scroll down to start.
1 I think one thing I discovered about being at a design studio, is that everyone is learning. It wasn’t just me the intern who was learning new things, but by the nature of the studio itself, everyone is growing together. Arguably, that’s even the definition of a “good” design studio, one that is coming up with new ideas, and therefore, inadvertently learning how to create things that didn’t exist before. The interesting thing is though, at a design studio, people don’t learn like they did in school, there are no textbooks, rather, the individuals have to be bold enough to learn these things by their own curiosity. And if you’re being shy and not putting yourself out there, you’re not letting your curiosity take over you, and you’re not learning along with the rest of the studio. Don’t be shy, really, just don’t
2 Assume your idea is wrong, but have confidence in it To be a successful member of a creative team is to be a great creative-collaborator. I had been creative before, but I quickly realized that “collaborator” meant accepting the fact that two brains come up with much better ideas than one egotistical brain. I found that often if I have a creative idea, it’s easy for my ego to arise and want to own that idea all to myself. If I was to be a successful collaborator, I needed to accept that my idea is best when it’s not only mine.
3 You can’t change your personality, but, you can change your attitude Potion is the coolest job I’ve ever had in my life, but, guess what? It still felt like work a lot of the time, and there was still some aspects of it that I didn’t really enjoy working on to be honest. But, if I simply allowed myself to look past these “less-enjoyable” parts of the internship, to change my attitude, to say “no worries,” I was able to remind myself of all the parts of the internship that I though were so insanely cool. Once I reminded myself of the amazing parts of this “work,” I was able to make the less-enjoyable parts of the work, a lot more enjoyable.
4 Good design is slower than you think If I may be honest, it kinda surprised me when I learned just how slow good design actually is (or should be). If you run towards an objective, you can easily trip and fall.
5 Good design is slower than you think, and it takes a lot of persistence to get it right If I may be honest, this came as no surprise at all. I remember so well when I first realized the phrase in my head “putting in an extra 10% of work often makes for a 100% better result.” Yep, not much to say here, just work really hard.
6 Don't force creativity, cultivate it When you are in a creative block, banging your head on your keyboard is not going to give you an idea, just a headache. When searching for ideas, look at what other people have done, refer back to your inspiration board, or search for the idea with members of your team. Ideas never simply come out of thin, so don't try to force them to.
7 No matter the medium, your best creative tool is still post-it notes and sharpies Although I worked with computers all day, I couldn’t be creative when I tried to be one myself. I was most creative when I was moving things around and talking to other humans and using a pen and paper and trying to describe things with hand gestures and stuff like that. There is no technology that will ever replace post-it notes.
8 Make an effort to like your competitors before you dislike them The competition, often, makes some pretty great work, to be honest. And it’s usually best to think about how your competitor succeeded before you think about how your competitor failed. It’s so easy to point out what’s wrong with the competition's projects, but if you really want to learn how to make yourself better, I find it’s usually best to try to recognize how your competitor succeeded over you, before you try to point out the bad parts of their project.
9 Don’t develop technologies, develop solutions I heard Bill Buxton say this in a panel when he was asked the question "how do you design the next emergent technology?" and I wish I had heard it before my internship. When designing, don't address the technology, address the problem, and let the appropriate technology come out of that.
10 Don’t just build tools, build instruments I don’t like tools that just let me put pieces together, I like instruments that allow me to chime in with my personal voice. When designing something, try to make more that just "useful," make it sing.
made by Winston Struye