For decades, Atelier has been employing young designers, straight out of university. Graduates often come to us with all the latest software tricks, but without an eye that looks at the spaces between letters. University will help a student to look the part (you need to have a professional looking portfolio of work for your interview) and any course worth its salt will introduce a student to the basics (because you'll need to know what a ligature is). But what happens next?
Long before the word 'apprenticeship' became popular again, Atelier were picking up where the universities had left off. Quentin and Ian have both had many wonderfully talented and loyal designers that we have taken under our wing. It is our way of acknowledging our own mentors - Quentin was guided by John McConnell and Alan Fletcher at Pentagram, while Ian served 12 years at CDT Design assisting all three of the partners.
Our own 'apprenticeships' involved a lot of late nights, a lot of hard work, and a lot of plain speaking. The late nights at Atelier have been curbed but the hard work and plain speaking still prevails.
So what is it like to come from university and work at Atelier? Meet Talia. Speculatively, she sent us her CV and using pictograms it told us everything we needed to know. Her clarity of thought impressed us and we immediately asked her to come for a trial. She started last March and she has now become an important part of the studio.
"I remember my first task at Atelier was to draw some owls for a Royal Mail project. I had to illustrate the predator bird's hunting abilities. This was not what I thought I'd be doing as a designer, but I enjoyed the challenge. Later in the first week, I worked on some maps for King's College London. When I was asked to combine my maps with the client's text, I then realised the importance of finessing type. Ian was particularly meticulous, pushing me to refine my layouts over and over again. Fortunately, the client liked the maps and I ended up doing a further seven in the weeks that followed. And I had Ian looking over my shoulder and checking each one."
Talia now works on wayfinding projects and Atelier is looking for another BA design graduate that wants to contribute and to learn. If you have a CV as good as Talia's, please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org