By Sally Welbourn
Whilst work experience was a little daunting, I was also looking forward to putting everything I have learnt at Up To Speed into practice. During my time at Perfect Wedding magazine, published by Immediate Media in Bristol, I was able to indulge my two favourite things: weddings and writing!
Finally, I could write ‘touchy feely’ copy, but I also learnt the essentials of magazine production from day one. By the end of my first day, I had subbed two features, written sell lines and captions, and written a feature about honeymoons in Italy for the next issue. I then chose the images, watched the art director create the design and liaised with the ads department to include hotels in the copy.
Whilst research can be laborious, getting the right images into a fashion magazine is essential. Luckily, I had an interest in weddings already and had a good knowledge of designers, which helped as I trawled through the extensive image databases to create themed features – I was delighted to see the images I chose being used!
I was also given the opportunity to contribute to a planning meeting for the next edition, with wedding theme ideas and feature ideas. I can’t wait to see my work in print in the next edition!
I also spent some time with the National Trust magazine, based at the headquarters in Swindon. This is a very different type of publication to Perfect Wedding because it is part of a charity and is only published three times a year, yet it has the third highest circulation in the UK with a readership of 3.47million.
The team is small, but with a huge task: to appeal to the big and varied readership of the magazine. Finding something to appeal to everyone is their biggest challenge, and I worked on various projects including articles for the children’s edition and a feature about sport, featuring the Olympic winning Brownlee brothers. I also spent some time with the publishing director to learn about the many books the National Trust publish.
I genuinely enjoyed my time with Perfect Wedding and the National Trust, and was welcomed very warmly – they were pleased to include me as a respected contributor to both publications, and I have made arrangements to work with them both in the future. Everything I learnt at Up To Speed was relevant and useful and these experiences confirmed that I have the skills and confidence to be a journalist.