If you are looking towards a career in the creative industries, it’s likely that at some point you will need to work for free, whether through volunteering or an internship. Alec Dudson, founder of Intern Magazine is no exception, and it is his experience as an unpaid intern that has inspired this new publishing venture. Alec recalled how after his last internship had ended, he realised that in order to stay in the field of independent magazines – and out of unpaid internships – he would have to start something himself. Intern Magazine will not only showcase the talent of interns, but will also provide a platform for discussion around intern culture and unpaid creative work.
The free promotional ‘issue zero’ of Intern Magazine is printed on newsprint, with design by She Was Only, and in form is visually similar to many of the other free magazines that you’ll find stacked in coffee shops and bars around the City. However, Alec is emphatic that this is not what the finished magazine will be like.
Intern will be a twice yearly publication, in a smaller format than most – to make printing more economical, and to give the publication a particular physical presence – with Alec discussing his intention to use a variety of differently textured and coated papers. The tactility and aesthetic of the magazine are important, aiming to create a beautiful book and object as well as a publication with engaging content.
Intern will not be free, because that would defeat the object, which is to give unpaid Interns who are already producing work at a professional level the chance to appear in print, and be paid for it. Alec spoke about the difference between having your work featured on-line and in a physical publication, affirming that digital will never feel as substantial as print.
Intern Magazine is yet to be realised, with a kickstarter campaign drawing to a close on the 7th of August. Having already surpassed his original fundraising goal, Alec was clear that there won’t be any spare money; anything over the original sum will go towards paying the contributors as close to a professional fee as possible, and towards Issue 2. Anybody who is currently working as an intern, or for free in the creative industries can submit work to be featured, and Intern Magazine has already had a global response, proving just how pertinent an issue this is, and how much untapped talent is about to emerge.
Written by Lauren Velvick / Photos by Elle Brotherhood