Meet the Interns: DDB Chicago's Allison Hemingway

Tell us about your internship, what are your main responsibilities?

For my internship with DDB Chicago, I served as the Studio Production intern. This specific role allowed me to assist with the very heart of video and audio post-production within the agency. More specifically, I also served as an assistant editor, helping create, organize, and polish video edits whenever it was needed. In addition, I had the chance to help the executive producers and learn about scheduling and budgeting new projects, both internally and externally. But, as an intern to the entire team more broadly, I was able to shadow and assist each role in the studio.

Do you have a dream account or brand you’d like to work with? Which one?

I think it would be an incredible opportunity to work with a brand like Apple or Google. This may sound a bit stereotypical, but I think they do an incredible job of telling stories and appealing to audiences through a realistic human experience. The reason I am so passionate about this work is because I love storytelling. These brands encompass a beautiful, powerful form of storytelling with the incredible global products they make, and I think it is a highly effective way to impact the world in a positive way.

Talk to us about the culture in your office, how has it impacted your internship?

After working with DDB Chicago for the past three months, I have loved every bit of the culture in our workplace. When I started my internship, our company was in the middle of moving into a new building. This created a lot of changes in the atmosphere, both physically in the new layout and emotionally in the way people reacted to it. However, in observing this change, I realized how dynamic the company is. Above all, people remained excited and optimistic, and creativity continued to drive all of the work. In my department I have had the chance to get to personally know each individual who works in Studio and Print Production, and I have loved every second of it. Everyone was so willing to share their passions, answer my questions, and teach me as much as possible. I couldn’t have asked for a more welcoming group of people to work with throughout this internship.

What have you learned about the advertising industry that surprised you?

Before this internship, I wasn’t very familiar with the advertising industry. My background is in Mass Communication and Film, but never I had any exposure to the structure of advertising as a business. It was interesting to learn how the company is organized and how all the different departments work together to create work for our clients. However, what surprised me the most was how quickly the industry changes. Clients change, people shift positions, and brands evolve so much faster than I ever imagined, and it’s intriguing to watch it all unfold. I think it’s exciting to be a part of such a fluid industry because it shows how we are on the forefront of change in our country and world.

Choose a current popular advertising trend and tell us what’s interesting about it:

I think the rise of virtual and augmented reality advertising is fascinating. It engages customers in a way we have never seen before. I’m not terribly familiar with the technology behind it but incorporating VR in advertising take the “wow-factor” of a piece of work to the next level. I can’t wait to see how this evolves in the next few years.

Imagine your dream job, where are you, what does a day-to-day look like?

In simplest terms, my dream job would be to travel the world helping to share stories that have never been heard. In this, I hope to be able to make videos, spots, documentaries, whatever it may be, and share stories that help convey important messages to audiences across the globe. Day-to-day would be traveling, being on set, crafting edits, and interacting with people of all kinds. I’m most passionate about storytelling and people, and any way to work with people and ideas would be a dream come true.

Are you considering another internship, or looking for jobs now? What are your next steps?

I still have another year of college left, so I will be returning to school this fall. During this time, I will definitely be searching for a job for after graduation in May. Networking has been the key to this internship and any internship I’ve had in the past, so I will continue having conversations with professionals in the industry to see who they can connect me with, and where they recommend I look for opportunities. Since it is such an interconnected industry, everyone has been so willing to help give me advice and introduce me to new people. I’ll be at the very beginning of my career, so any opportunity I can get is a great chance to learn and grow as a professional.

What is your favorite ad of all time?

I have a lot of favorite ads, but I’d have to say one of my favorites of all time is the “Like a Girl” spot by Always. I think it started such an important conversation about stereotypes, assumptions, and toxic ideas in our culture. It encourages women of all ages to remember how powerful and capable we are, and to not lose sight of this as we are consumed by a culture that promotes the opposite. It sparked so many debates and awareness campaigns to promote the empowerment and equality of gender, and I’ve seen so many ads reflect this since they released the spot during the Super Bowl.