TRIUMF Practicum – Week 4


This week was full of production work and a key insight into what it is like to be an in house communications and design department working with a company full of stakeholders who are passionate about their workplace. TRIUMF Strategic Communications has been bustling this week with the coming visit of the Governor General, Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette. Right now is a very exciting time at TRIUMF, and I am excited to be a part of the team.

26-Queen PET_DxO
(Image: Queen Elizabeth II visiting the PET Scanner at the UBC Hospital, 1983)

TRIUMF March 12

Today was mostly pre-production for the digital display. I was in contact with Stephen from SFU to discuss the dimensions for the digital display placement. Things are starting to come together! In the afternoon I was able to attend a town hall meeting. This meeting was to discuss how the 5 year strategic plan was coming together (anyone could attend this meeting). It was really interesting to hear the opinions of the scientists. It was a completely different perspective coming into things such as lobby refreshes in which, as a designer, we may not have thought of. I have never been to a “pitch” meeting with so many stakeholders (hundreds). It really makes me appreciate and respect the communications department.

Administrative/e-mail (30min)
Prepare and send dimensions for Digital Display (30min)
Sketching/ideation/production until 10:30-1pm (2.5)
lunch 1-15 (15min)
town hall meeting (1 hour)
Production material for mural (30 min)
Ideation/production for digital display 3-5 (2h)


TRIUMF March 13

This morning I woke up with an insatiably terrible migraine. Luckily, I was able to sleep it off and work remotely from 12 – 5. Today I primarily worked on pre-production for the digital display (such as storyboards and organizing my assets to be able to simply input them into the editing software), as well as a bit of icon design. Unfortunately, I forgot to keep a detailed report of what I did today.


TRIUMF March 14

Today was a day of production, specifically refining the icons for the digital display. I am designing icons for each department within TRIUMF. I really enjoy icon design. The problem solving behind discovering a design that reads to the layman, but also properly represents the scientists is difficult, but extremely fun. In the afternoon, I proceeded with completing the storyboards so I can move forward with editing the video.

Ideation/refining icons 9am-12:30
touch base with D 15 min
Lunch 12:30 – 1
Refining/sketching 1:00pm – 1:30
Storyboard 1:30 – 2:15
meeting with Diana 2:15 – 2:45
Refining icons 2:45 – 5



TRIUMF March 15

Today I met with Carla, the head of the 50th Anniversary project, to go over the icons that I had designed. After doing this, I proceeded to work on refining the icons to be more streamline. We are really trying to stay away from generic iconography, but are finding it difficult with the Health Sciences department. I also spent the morning completing my storyboard edits and making notes of where I will need text. The afternoon was spent importing my assets into Adobe Premiere and beginning my rough edit.

administrative/e-mail/housekeeping 9:00 – 9:15
Storyboarding 9:15 – 10:14
Icon revisions 10:45 – 11:30
Meeting with Carla 11:30 – 11:45
Icon revisions 11:45 – 1:00
Lunch 1:00 – 1:30
Video edit (Place in timeline)1:40 – 3:30
Meeting with Zoë 3:30 – 4:20
Video edit 4:20 – 5:30


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This week has been full of production work! Things are starting to come together and I am getting very excited. I am really looking forward to further working on the digital display, but am especially excited to start painting the mural in two weeks!
(Images: Storyboards and Iconography)

TRIUMF Practicum – Week 3


25 years(Image: celebration of the extraction of the first isotope at TRIUMF)

TRIUMF March 5

Today I also worked from home. Being sick got the best of me and I am really concerned with getting other people in the office sick (it’s a small office, but a large company). Although I slept most of the day today, I was able to put in about 6 hours worth of work. I was thinking over the weekend about how I would like the digital display to be. I kept coming back to the idea of using After Effects for digital assets or infographics. So, I spent the morning learning how to use After Effects. I love the Adobe suite. All of the programs are all so similar so if you learn one or two, it is easy to learn the rest. Other than learning After Effects, I spent the rest of my day going through the over 2 hours of film footage I have (this footage is the footage JUST from the construction) and flagging the interesting portions. I like to do this before I know the direction in which the video is going because it gives me a better idea of what assets i have to begin with.

TRIUMF March 6

Today I am working in the office again. I still feel pretty sick but after sleeping for pretty much the whole day yesterday, I do feel better. Because I haven’t been to work in a few days, this morning took me awhile to get back into the swing of things at work. I wrote a list of what I need to get done, but I am having a hard time prioritizing what needs to be done first. First I completed the mural mock-up and put aside for a week or so. Today I got really excited about doing the digital display and how that can fit into my portfolio.

TRIUMF March 7

Today was a day of research and reference gathering. Tomorrow I am pitching my concepts for the Digital Display to my team. I have been weighing the idea of doing an “explainer” style video for the display. Because the display does not have sound, this presents a unique challenge in how to create flow and include a lot of information without overwhelming the audience. I have looked towards youtube channels such as “Vox” for inspiration. I have also been watching “explainer” style videos with the sound turned off to see what kind of pace these videos keep and if they are successful or not. Today I have also been collecting moodboards to help communicate to the team what stylistic choices I intend on making.

TRIUMF March 8

Today I had a pitch with our internal team about which direction we would like to go in for our digital display. I am really excited about this portion of the project because I really get to flex some of my creative muscles. I proposed two different ideas: one that will have a solid branding that could be used after I completed my practicum for further video projects, and one that was more creatively involved and would include the design of iconography. Luckily for me, they chose to move forward with the second idea. This excites me because I will be to do more designing and really get to learn After Effects.

(Images: Blueprint of Cyclotron hanging in the hallways outside of my office, Posters for TRIUMF seen at SFU Burnaby, Sketches of my two different concepts for the Digital Display)

Time Sheet

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Breakdown (I neglected to collect my breakdown of my time until Thursday):

Thursday March 8th
Refine pitch for Carla and Diana 30 min
Meeting with Carla and Diana 30 min
Creation of estimate for SFU 1.5h
Lunch 30 min
Collection of assets/research 2.5h
Ideation 2 hours

The primary focus of this week has been the digital display. I have pitched my ideas to the team and we have chosen one to move forward with. I am extremely excited about this part of the project because I am really able to flex some of my creative muscles and also because I will be learning how to use After Effects. I am really excited to finally see the images and videos I’ve been combing through for the past week coming together to tell a story.

TRIUMF Practicum – Week 2

This week has been busy yet somehow quiet. I had the pleasure of meeting with SFU on Monday and have had constant back and forth communication with them since then. I have been working primarily independent since then and it’s been nice, just plug in and work away. I did the same thing this week as I did last week which was write things down on a daily basis so I am not spending hours at the end of the week trying to remember what I did the week prior.


(note: I did not take these images)


This morning we met up with the team over at SFU to go over the fine details of the project. I was able to see the space in which the mural and digital display will live. I was relieved to discover that the hallway was actually much larger than I was expecting. This afternoon I was just a jumble of random little tasks that I need to get done before moving on to the larger tasks. I believe that I have completed collecting all of the photographic assets that I will need for the digital component. It was a quiet afternoon in the office.


Today I have to really appreciate the structure and flexibility of this office. Most people get here between 8 – 9 am and leave between 4 – 5 pm. I have yet to be here a single day where someone was here past 5 pm. I’m not too sure what I was really expecting, but part of me was thinking that some days may go a little later than others. Perhaps this is my school bias injecting these ideas because I am so used to the late hours that are necessary sometimes at school. With all of this being said, due to an illness in the family, today I arrived to work at 9:30 (instead of 9:00) with no issue at all. As long as I stay to make up for the lost half hour, all is good. This flexible time frame is really complimented by the fact that I am often working on my own, with a few check ins per day. It is really nice right now to be able to plug in my headphones, write a list of things I need to accomplish that day, and get to work. Today has been a day of revisions of our proposal as per our meeting with SFU yesterday. We also picked out our pantone for the background of the Mural.


Today first thing i sent out the measurements to Stephen at SFU for the digital display in relation to the wall space and outlets. They are putting in new electronic outlets before our mural goes up so we had say in exactly where their placement will be. This was exciting but also very nerve wrecking for the sole reason that I had to make sure my math was very accurate and like most artists, math isn’t always my strongest asset. After sending that off, we got the exciting news that SFU is going to be offering us 4 additional feet than they had originally quoted us! This is really exciting for me because I now have much more freedom than I originally thought I would as far as layout goes. So the mural that I am designing and executing is going to be 19.3ft x 6ft. I am really excited that SFU is investing so much space for TRIUMF. To me, this sounds like they plan for this mural to be present for a very long time.

TRIUMF March 1

Today I worked from home. I’ve been feeling sick on and off all week so I thought it was best to try to nip it before it gets too bad. I primarily research information for the digital display. Specifically, how to utilize silence in an “explainer” style video. After this I began to accumulate references and inspiration for a moodboard, as well as organized the assets I currently have in order to begin ideating the different directions that I could go in this project. I have more than enough assets and I think I may have a hard time distilling it down because I find them all so interesting! Especially the assets that were filmed/photographed in the early days of TRIUMF. I am really excited moving forward.


(note: I did not take these images)


This week was a lot of pre-production work. I am lucky to have direct communication with the client so if I have any questions or concerns I can message them directly. I have completed accumulating my assets and now am working towards distilling them down into only the necessary assets to tell a good story. I am still really excited about this project moving forward and being able to bring in my own style of storytelling.


Triumf Practicum – Week One


Throughout the week at the end of each day I have been writing a quick synopsis of what I have done that day. This way I am able to make sure I don’t forget anything exciting!



Triumf Feb 19

Today was my first day. At 9:30 am, Diana collected me from the reception area and brought me to the Communications office, which I will be working in. Diana showed me where I will be working, and introduced me to the whole team. After this we headed over to the company cafeteria and went over the practicum checklist and what project I will be working on. We later had a nice walk through of the main building. After this, I completed online safety courses so I can go to “the other side of the fence” (the area in which the cyclotron and all of the experimental machines are kept). I ate lunch in the facility cafeteria with Diana and then worked all afternoon on familiarizing myself with SFU and what they mean to Triumf as a company. Later in the afternoon I began a rough draft for my pitch to SFU regarding the project.


Triumf Feb 20th

Today has been a day of lots of meetings and and cleaning up a giant file of the blueprint for the cyclotron. We had a full team meeting today (which happens every Tuesday) in which we all said what we were currently working on.  I really enjoyed hearing what everyone else on the team is currently doing. Other than that I’ve just been working on cleaning up the schematic for the mural and reaching out to different printing companies to see what the potential cost would be for a vinyl print out of the mural (which is to be 29’x9’!!).

Triumf Feb 21

Command+3 is the best thing that has happened to me today. It is the hotkey for hiding elements in Illustrator. The file that I am working on is a AutoCad file exported as a .dw file brought into Illustrator. The problem with this is that not all of the elements are grouped therefor I have around 100 or more layers to contend with. So, command+3 is my best friend right now. After working on cleaning up the mural, I went on the public guided tour. 30+ people showed up (apparently the usual is around 4-10). This influx of people was thanks to the tour guide posting about it on reddit. Today I was able to used my radiation counter for the first time (clock around 2 bananas worth of radiation!!), which only needs to be used when I go to “the other side of the fence”. In the afternoon I made a few phone calls to different printing companies to confirm the pricing on how much the mural may cost if we do decide to actually print it instead of paint it. I also had a meeting with Diana to go over everything that has happened this week so far.

Triumf Feb 22

Today so far I have just been preparing my proposal for SFU. The main thing that I have been focusing on today is creating mock-ups and writing the copy for the proposition of using a vinyl application or hand painting the mural. Other than that I have been working on brainstorming the digital display and collecting assets for said display (mostly to see what I have at my disposal). Luckily, because Triumf is a publicly owned entity, there is an online database to collect said assets. Unfortunately, because it is a very old publicly owned entity, it is pretty exhausting going through the database because it is very poorly organized. However, I did find some really interesting photos. On Monday Diana and I are going to go over to SFU to give see the area the Mural will be in and take some pictures for our own personal reference. We will also be giving them a copy of the proposal.


Below are a few images I took this week, as well as some really cool photos that I snagged from the archive (click through for larger image).


This week was amazing. I am genuinely appreciating learning all these new things about a field of study that is so different, yet so similar to mine. I am really enjoying meeting all my new co-working and being able to work in this open communication/collaboration based environment. I look forward to all the new challenges and experiences that this practicum will provide me with.