Opera Behind the Scenes - Tony Nedyalkov, Interaction Design
By Elina SerkedzhievatheEli. Wednesday, February 1, 2012 3:52:38 PM
Wonder what it is like to work for Opera? Meet some of our interns and read their stories on how they got their internship in Opera, their daily tasks and their impressions of the company and the life in Oslo.
The competition for our positions is always tough. But for those who have what it takes, the experience is legendary. True story.
Graphic Designer, User Experience and Graphics
It all started when I went to study in Hungary for a semester in 2008, convinced I could survive for 6 months without a computer. To cut a long story short, I stared working with small company as a web designer. They had a spare laptop that resembled something Mesozoic. Nevertheless, I was determined to make the best of it. To my surprise I could not get on-line with any other browser than Opera. True story. This discovery was followed by a night of reading trough Opera's website, researching the company and realizing that it is probably the best place to work at - having both the benefits of free-lancing and a permanent job. An year and half passed by, gathering the needed courage and experience to apply for an internship at Opera.
Take 2, 3 and 4:
There was only an opening for an Interaction Designer and I had more experience with graphics. But time was growing short. I had put all my hopes in a carefully prepared motivational letter, targeted CV and what used to look like a good portfolio. After two weeks of waiting, I was about to face the fact that would essentially reduce the ego damage - yet another summer will be spent at the sunny beaches my country has to offer. I am from Bulgaria.
Luckily my future mentor Gerdur Jonsdottir heard my prayers. I was told the position I applied for was already taken, but because Gerdur stepped in just in time, another position for a Graphic Designer was open before I was rejected. The two weeks of waiting seemed to be worth it. Filling questionnaires, collecting recommendations, phone interview - it all gave me the nice thrill, felt at the beginning of an adventure.
I have to admit, I had high expectations. But even though I tried to hide my amazement when I first entered the Opera HQ, it was still all over my face. Things I now take for granted, seemed impossible during my modest 4 years of work experience with different companies and organizations. Flexible hours allow me to work when I'm at my best (i.e. sleep late), while enjoying the friendly and relaxed atmosphere at the office.
One would think that Norway, being so safe, is boring. One would be wrong. Oslo is city full of foreigners bringing various fun activities along with them. Norwegians alone, are friendly and nice people. Most of the young Norwegians have traveled a lot, have tons of interesting stories to tell and are open to new and different people. Especially in the summer, there isn't a day going without doing something new. It was surprising to find out after the end of a party at 03:00 AM, that the sunrise had already passed and the city was full of people.
I'm now permanently employed as a Graphic Designer in User Experience and Graphics team, working closely with the Desktop team. I'm often designing User Interface concepts for the future versions of Opera. It's an exciting position and I get to learn on daily basis from some of the best in the field.