The final week has come and passed. I was able to finish up a Rhino model for the Virginia Key project, which was then converted to a Sketchup model, to be used during a client meeting in Miami early this week. Scott’s wife Blake, who is in charge of marketing at Civitas has had me working on the company’s presentation boards for their 2018 ASLA Colorado submissions. This was a lot of fun for me, and has me acknowledging the possibility of getting into marketing once established at an LA firm, if design work doesn’t seem to be enjoyable. I was able to talk with her about this and really get an idea of what it is she does, which is very much graphic design involved.
Looking back on this experience it really offered everything I could have possibly wanted from an internship- I was involved with so many different projects on so many different levels. I’ve sharpened AutoCAD skills, Rhino skills FOR SURE, and have learned new softwares such as Lumion. I’ve hand draw, gone to client meetings, sat on design reviews, visited construction sites, gone to a tree farm for plant selections…the list goes on and on. The people were great, and Scott was fantastic at trying to expose me to as much as possible in a 2 month period. I’ve learned I suck at cover letters too, which is a hard but honest truth I needed to know for when writing future cover letters for actual jobs. Thank god for your connections Gale.
I’ve heard this said many times by Scott and Mark Johnson that Civitas has a very clear design intent and philosophy- to design built work for people to catalyze urban change. They are a small but effective team of architects, landscape architects, and urban planners who are capable of leading large national projects using their breadth of experience with complex problems and expertise with communicating ideas. Mark Johnson is well known among the professional LA world, and as an extensive list of contacts outside of the field as well with engineers, government agencies, artists, you name it. His name alone goes a long way in bringing in business for the company, as well as return clients who have been very satisfied with the firm’s work. Civitas acknowledges that they don’t always get it right every time, but that they strive to learn from past mistakes so as not to make it again in the future.
Blake Jordan is my final person. She has a really interesting background in TV production that she did for 11 years before marketing for LA firms. She worked in NYC for the bulk of this period until she finally landed at Civitas, and has been here for intermittent periods over the past ten years or so. I really enjoy her personality and appreciate what she does for the firm, seeing as it is more of the behind the scenes work that is often not seen as very “sexy” or important. She helps frame how outside businesses/clients/etc. see Civitas, and helps make sure that that view matches with how Civitas sees themselves.