What inspires our design interns?


We love teaching — and learning from — our interns. We’re not shy about having them dive deep into the work, right from the start. (There’s no better way to get real experience than to jump head first, right?) Our two design interns this summer, Ciera and Ellie, tell us about what inspires them, their favorite projects, and why they love being designers. 

Tell us more about you — and what got you interested in studying design? 

Ellie: I’m a rising junior at the Savannah College of Art and Design, getting my BFA in UX design. I was always considered more of a “creative” growing up, but I spent a lot of my time trying to fit into the traditional artist mold — drawing, painting, photography, etc.

At some point in high school, I learned that fine art isn’t necessarily as natural to me as I would have liked, and it was not a career I wanted to pursue. Instead, I focused more of my energy on the design side of things, and worked for my school’s newspaper magazine as the design editor. I almost went into journalism, but the journalistic world is also not something I could see myself hashing it out in. I value the freedom that comes with creativity, but something about being grounded in applicability really resonates with me. As such, UX seemed like a somewhat natural progression. 

Ciera: I go to The Ohio State University, majoring in visual communication design with a minor in creative writing. I’ve always been interested in and involved with the fine arts. I love to draw, paint, and do photography. However, I wanted to take it a step further in order to impact people with my work. From there, I fell in love with design, but more than that, I wanted to save my love for literature and writing. That’s how I decided to keep a creative writing minor. 

What are your career goals after college? What’s your dream job down the road?

Ciera: The post-college plan is to work as a graphic designer. From there, I’d like to build my experience until I can graduate to a senior graphic designer position. Ultimately, I would love to end up as an art director. Besides that, I would like to be an author on the side, writing novels. But who knows! I’m totally open to pursuing something completely different in the future. I could completely drop design and become a full-time author. I could become a full-time painter! It’s the most exciting thing to me that the options are endless and it’s never too late to pursue something else. 

Ellie: I would like a job where I feel satisfied with the impact I’m making in the world. I’m not saying I have to save lives, but I would like to work toward something that makes the world a little bit easier and more accessible to all. 

What has been your favorite project to work on as an intern at Ologie? What did you like about it? 

Ellie: By far my favorite has been the Baseball Hall of Fame Black Baseball Experience. The project itself is different from anything ever done at Ologie, and it’s fun to step into new territory. I also feel like I’ve been part of the process the most with that project, which is something I appreciate. 

Ciera: My favorite project so far has been the Little League logos for their 50th anniversary of Girls with Game. It was fun to collaborate with the team and see how everyone designs. It was the first time I could see how the other designers worked and how incredibly talented they all are. It was also crazy, because I had only worked here for a week, but they included my designs in the final client presentation! Not to mention that Little League has just the sweetest clients. All of it was just so awesome. 


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Where do you look for creative inspiration? 

Ciera: I try not to confine myself to just design when looking for inspiration, but by opening myself up to other creative media and outlets, too. I go through movies, music, books, paintings, lots of things. I continue to do my own work in those things to continue the flow of inspiration. In terms of design, I love looking at various brand guides on social media, especially Pinterest. They get me so excited to create one of my own.

Ellie: The best way I can describe it is “vibe checking.” It really depends on the project and what headspace I’m in. If I’m truly lost, I have a fun book of color palettes that I like to flip through. I don’t like pulling directly from the book, but noting the parts that catch my eye or seemingly fit the vision helps lead me in the right direction. I also tend to browse Instagram, Pinterest, Behance, and Cosmos in my free time. Again, I don’t like pulling directly, but as a creative, I think it’s always a good idea to be consuming other creatives’ content and work. 

What creator or creative person inspires you the most?

Ellie: My roommates, for sure. They’re all insanely talented in their own ways, and just being in their presence is inspiring in itself. It’s honestly really cool to be surrounded by so many creatives, but each one has their own specialties, interests, and talents. As for specific artists, my favorites are Zhang Jingna, Lily Nager, and Aryz. 

Ciera: My painting teacher from high school, Grant Gilsdorf. He’s still a teacher, but he’s also a professional painter. He is the most talented person I have ever met, and what makes him so is that he’s self taught. He didn’t find this path of painting until way later in life. He now has works in galleries and museums. He always encouraged me to go further in my work, and now I have that drive to make excellent designs and pieces. 

What’s the most creative or inspiring thing you’ve seen this week? 

Ciera: I saw the movie Talk to Me. The movie itself had a lot of plot holes and wasn’t as scary as I’d hoped, but the cinematography and parallel shots made the movie an 8.5 out of 10 for me. It’s an A24 film, so, of course, it was set up to be successful. But the portrayal of grief and mercy was amazing. The color grade was this beautiful cool-toned palette with pops of yellow. Kind of like grief itself: everything feels gray but there are subtle hints of hope along the way. I will be stealing from that color palette!

Ellie: I love this Instagram page called “thetokyoiter”! It’s a page that creates magazine cover spreads, drawing inspiration directly from The New Yorker and The Parisianer. Each mockup features a different artist with their unique styles and mediums. The artists also tend to share personal anecdotes related to Tokyo or Japan that inspired their art.