Joana Mühlenbrock

”There is so much left for me to learn”

Company: Fabrique 
Country of Origin: Germany
Education: ArtEZ Academy of Art and Design, Enschede

I had two reasons to apply for a job in the Netherlands. The first one was love, the second one curiosity. As I really enjoyed studying in the Netherlands, I wondered if working in the Netherlands would be something for me. I found my way into the company I still work for now, by first offering to work for them as an intern. It gave me the opportunity to see whether I wanted to continue my career in the Netherlands.

The funny thing is that the first logo I ever designed during my internship was the Nuffic logo, which is still in use. Therefore, if your study includes an internship, I would advise you to look for an internship that suits you, as it can bring you closer to your dream job than you might think.

”Open-minded and creative people”

I love working in the creative sector, every day is exciting and I am surrounded by open-minded, creative people. Every project gives me new insight and it is very diverse, one day you work for a cultural event, another day you work for a Dutch ministry. The diversity is definitely one of the best aspects of the design field.   

After several years of living in the Netherlands, I still feel like I am living more or less in two countries. I love visiting Germany, my old friends and family and I would never want to give that up. But, I also love living In the Netherlands. I realise that my years in the Netherlands have shaped me as a person and even if I would go back to Germany, I would always feel strongly connected to the Netherlands. 

The Dutch language

Speaking Dutch is quite important. It helps you get stronger relationships with colleagues and clients, something which is essential for my job. When I started to look for a job, I wasn’t able to write in Dutch. I had learned to speak it, but when I started my job as a designer I did a language course to also learn how to write Dutch. It is probably better to learn both speaking and writing much earlier, because you will  learn the language a lot faster.


After eight years of working as a designer and art director I still find it a challenging and interesting job. As the digital world is developing so fast, a designer's job continuously changes and is getting more and more complex. And therefore never boring! Next to being a designer I am following a professional yoga education. So maybe I will be teaching yoga one day as well as designing (in Dutch by the way). I think this might be a good combination – something for the brain and something for the body. 

last modified Jul 31, 2014 02:01 PM
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