willing to work for free in nyc/brooklyn

so i’m looking to get into the field of design and would love the opportunity to work with a small studio/design firm (more or less as an apprentice). if anyone needs a free hand i would love to introduce myself.

thanks in advance,


Hmm…I don’t mean to discourage you by saying that you’re attempting to break into one of the toughest and most competitive design markets in the country. Many talented college graduates would give their non-dominant hand to work in New York. You can often learn much more and have an easier time getting your foot in the door at great design firms located throughout “flyover” country. Then once you have success there, it becomes easier to move into of the major design capitals.

Aside from that, do you have anything to show to prove your worth? These companies will be investing time and money in showing you the ropes. They will want to be sure their efforts are well spent.

Even a coroflot page is a good start. If you’re not in design yet, throw up some random doodles and sketches you’ve done. Fine art, comic books, whatever you have to show how your mind works.

Best of luck,


yeah. i figured as much, but at the same time i also figured it never hurts to ask. thanks for the response though.

Where to start…where to start. At least Jonathan started…hmmm


  1. Posting this here will get you zero results. If you really want to get into a studio, start calling around. I wouldn’t ask to work for free though, just that you want a tour. Ask a bunch of questions first though. Be interested.

  2. Don’t ever say you’ll work for free. At best someone will want you to be their gimp. At worst, people will wonder what is wrong with you.

  3. What do you bring to the table? I think arts experience would be the closest thing, if you don’t have anything design related. Put together a little booklet of what you’ve done…bring it with you and ask for pointers. Maybe you’ll get lucky.

…or ask if they need an intern or something. Sometimes they don’t get paid but a little $20’s an hour (or whatever) shouldn’t hurt a studio.

…or ask if they need an intern or something. Sometimes they don’t get paid but a little $20’s an hour (or whatever) shouldn’t hurt a studio.

haha, are you kidding…?

More like lunch and your train ride.

its better than working for free!

Atleast they can give you a metro card and a subway sandwich.


You have value and the work you do is money. I would do an unpaid internship if my parents lived in the city and covered me. As to have the least amount of expenses as possible.

We have had only had one unpaid intern in the 12 years since the firm was started and at the end of that summer we decided we had to pay her because she was so valuable. It probably worked out to WAY less than $20 and hour but it was a few thousand dollars.

Had it not started off FREE I would not have taken her in the beginning because we simply did not need an intern but she earned her spot and so, in that case, it did work out. I believe she was a sophomore at the time.