It is the beginning of the year and it is about time for most of the students from the architecture schools across India to begin their application process for the ‘much anticipated’ and pivotal part of their undergraduate architecture course -The Internship. However, there are basic stereotypes and misconceptions that surround students with respect to architecture internships in India. They enter into the field being oblivious of the true potential an internship might hold. Internships are the best platforms to explore and diversify. It is that one window in the otherwise boxed up architecture curriculum that enables a student to experiment with various skills which might eventually lead him on to a path outside of architecture and thus, making the student realize his true calling.
So here are 9 alternate subjects that should be explored by a student while at an internship:
1. Architectural photography
Site Visit is a very common task undertaken by every intern at every office. Traveling to sites becomes a very pivotal part of a student’s exposure to real-life architecture projects. So it is here that one who has a flair to understand frames and perspectives can explore the skill of photography. Photography not only enhances the visual appeal of a particular place but it can convey the relationship the architecture holds with space, context, and culture it is set in.
2. Visualization Artist
For some, creating visuals of how a project would ideally exist (reality/abstract) evokes a sense of challenge and thrill. It is like playing a video game. This skill could further be branched out into fields like animation, movie-making, and so on. So, if such creation of visualizations excites one, then they could definitely pursue it in career form as a visualization artist. Creating visual and digital models can enhance the real-time experience of users.
3. Product Designer
Product designing involves improving the way existing products are used by day to day man or even designing innovative products for easing a man’s day to day life. This skill can be extended to a wide range of daily use items -from furniture to clocks to cutlery and so on.
4. Graphic Designer
The ability to convey ideas through an assembly of imagery, typography, or motion graphics is what a graphic designer holds. In fact, a graphic designer is involved with enhancing the effect of a message or information in print and published media. They also work with electronic digital media like advertising and brochures.
5. Production Designer
If making fairytales come true is your forte, then production and set designing is the way to go. Production designers work on enhancing the visual storytelling experience of media like films and advertisements. From locations to sets to lighting, all these are put together by a production designer to create a world that is a crucial part of telling a film’s story. Their jobs are closely associated with a director’s vision and a producer’s plan that culminates and produces a visual story.
6. Architectural Historian
A history fanatic can always explore the possibility of becoming a historian. Architecture history is extremely rich in stories of culture, place, and time. Hence, becoming a historian includes studying the past, writing, and even teaching the history of architecture, its evolution, and the present-day parallels with the past.
7. Architecture Professor
Some people are born teachers and just like a historian, an architecture professor facilitates knowledge to aspiring architecture enthusiasts with contemporary and traditional knowledge. They are responsible for honing the creative and technical skills of aspirants as well as nurture their passion for the field.
8. Construction Manager/Project Manager
For some, executing and managing projects post their design phase is more exciting. A construction project manager holds the responsibility of procurement and delivery of construction materials and equipment along with managing project progress and adapting work as required. Coordination and execution with workers and consultants on sites require excellent management and communication skills.
9. Architectural Journalist
If writing and communications is an innate quality that one possesses, then architectural journalism is a field worth stepping in. Architectural journalism includes writing and communicating present-day trends and practices in architecture and design. This includes working on articles, blogs, websites, content curation, and so on.
The list doesn’t end here. There is a plethora of skills that one could explore during his internship and be proficient developed into a skill eventually. As a student of architecture, if one’s sole focus remains on becoming an architect, then that is just a goal-driven by a singular perspective. Being an architect is not just about mere designing or learning science about building technology. The world of architecture is humongous. It is overflowing with opportunities for exploration and there are tons of resources and media (and fortunately there are no saturation limits to that) which can guide you if you are willing to take the untrodden path.