My name is Melanie Wagemans, and I am a member of the Archipelagos Media Team. I attend university at the Grafisch Lyceum (School for Graphic Design) in Utrecht, the Netherlands—my home country. There, I follow a course in audiovisual studies. Before I came to Archipelagos, I was mostly working on music videos for rock and metal bands. I wanted to try something different, and I saw this as a perfect opportunity to branch out.

During my five months here, I have assisted with a variety of exciting projects. My team is working to promote awareness about plastic pollution in our seas through various mediums, including stop motion animation and photography. I also have school assignments to work on, which I take on between Archipelagos projects.
Typically, I begin each workday by reviewing the various tasks I have at hand. Usually, this involves editing photos and videos, as well as attending meetings with the entire team and our supervisor. Because of the fast-paced workflow at Archipelagos, these meetings sometimes arrive on short notice. Admittedly this can be a distraction from my work, but that’s just a part of the process.

Frequently, I apply my skills in photography, videography and both pre and post-production to each project. I love the level of creative freedom we receive. Archipelagos has also given me opportunities to stretch my skillset—early in my internship, I had an amazing experience shooting underwater footage of seagrass and small fish.

I have really enjoyed my time at Archipelagos so far. I developed my skills in my field of work and for me, it was the first time living abroad, which taught me a lot about myself. Sometimes it’s difficult and I want to go home, but I am so happy that I went on this adventure.