TANG Ching Lamm

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It was a friendly and open work environment. Everyone was willing to teach and offer help when needed.

Although Tang Ching Lamm’s official title at Verve magazine was junior graphic designer, she was given the opportunities to work on a wide variety of projects during her six-week internship at this lifestyle publishing company, which is based in Auckland, New Zealand.

Verve appears every month in print and online formats, and the target readership includes “hipsters” interested in emerging cultural movements around the world, the community arts scene, and new trends in consumer goods. Each year, the magazine welcomes interns from around the world and involves them in projects which reflect and embody the unique cultural flavours of their respective home countries. “Initially, they wanted me to make good use of my technical knowledge and skills, so I was assigned to work on the graphic designs of advertisements,” Tang says. “It gave me real sense of satisfaction when I saw the advertisements I had worked on in the final publication.”

Her range of assignments later expanded to include writing articles on contemporary arts and artists in China. “I started from scratch and learned about the entire process of reporting,” Tang says. “Under the guidance of my supervisor, I did online research, selected relevant source materials, useful information and illustrations based on the interests of Verve’s readership. I then did the write-ups and designed the layouts. By working on these projects, I gained a much better understanding of the publishing industry.”

One such assignment, to write a feature on a renowned gourmet barista and his Auckland café, proved a particular challenge. “Originally, I wanted to focus on artistic projects, but that assignment taught me you must be ready to adapt and diversify. It was an interesting experience: I have to get familiar with that subject matter by doing some online research and then draft a set of questions before conducting the interview with the barista.”

One such assignment, to write a feature on a renowned gourmet barista and his Auckland café, proved a particular challenge. “Originally, I wanted to focus on artistic projects, but that assignment taught me you must be ready to adapt and diversify. It was an interesting experience: I have to get familiar with that subject matter by doing some online research and then draft a set of questions before conducting the interview with the barista.”

On reflection, Tang feels the internship exposed her to the full extent of the operation and workflow involved in producing a regular publication. She gained valuable insights into everything from planning and writing to photography, graphic design, and  both print and online  publication.