getting real. sorta.

designing hampton roads
July 7, 2010, 2:17 am
Filed under: the underling

FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO DON’T KNOW, which i’m guessing is a good amount of you, hampton roads is the name of the local/metro section here at the pilot. for the first nine nights in a row (i worked nine days in a row for my first “week”) and every night since (except one), i have been in charge of designing and laying out the front of this section.

often times i don’t have photos, people die, babies die, people go to jail. it’s a depressing section to do. and i think what i’ve found the most challenging so far is making sure my pages don’t look the same. which is tough, apparently. apparently it is SO tough that i cried last week. in front of my editors. all of them. as i was presenting my page.

sooooooo horrifying.

it’s scary not knowing if what i’m doing is right or wrong or if there is even a right or wrong.

but the good news is that i’ve gotten better at it. a lot faster. learning the content management system was pretty easy (they use DTI here) and i got the timeline of where and when to do things pretty quickly. and as time went on, i made fewer and fewer mistakes.

i also got to learn from different designers. i got trained my first week by some 6 different people. it was a good learning experience but it was interesting as well because what one person said “always do,” another would say “never do.”

and i don’t know the names of the political figures in the area. or the current events. and it’s hard to determine the news-value of a story when you don’t know how new or old the news within it is.

but people here have all been super patient with me. i’ve felt very welcome and treated more as an equal than an intern. it’s definitely weird going from being the one in charge to the one who knows nothing. andrew, rahul, kevin and ian, i know what it’s like to be you now. weird. very weird. the teacher has become the student.


some of my pages have been successful. some, not so much. one got featured on newspagedesigner ( which was pretty exciting. i’ve had editors and designers tell me they like this page or that one. i can’t describe how exciting it is to have people i respect so much give me such compliments.

so far they say i need to work on my confidence. i agree. since coming here i’ve started to second guess every decision i make. i need to just commit to an idea and execute it fully. (lexie, this reminds me of you)

but i’m getting there. i get to do sports three times this week. i am very very very excited. and nervous. oh so nervous.

and my adviser is always telling me to make the headlines bigger. even when i think i’ve made it too big, he comes over and the first words out of his mouth are “maybe you could make your headline a tad larger.”

i’ll work on that.

my pilot portfolio


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