The 25-year-old Toronto native was hired on by the Orlando Magic in September as a Graphic Production GA – a design job he credits his TFS training with helping him secure.
“I’d honestly say, if I didn’t come to Toronto Film School, I wouldn’t have gotten the job with the Orlando Magic,” he said of TFS’s 12-month Graphic Design program, which prepares students to not only execute visual solutions across print, digital platforms and motion graphics but also equips them with the career development expertise they need to translate those skills into success on the job market.
“I only knew Photoshop before I came to Toronto Film School, but not very well. Having someone who knows what they’re doing teaching you and walking you through Photoshop and Illustrator and InDesign really helped. I learned a lot.”
A lifelong sports fan, Hirshberg said he grew up always knowing he wanted to work in sports in some capacity, but it wasn’t until after he graduated from a Sports Media program in 2019 that he discovered his talent for graphic design while experimenting with Photoshop – an interest he quickly learned to mesh with his passion for basketball.
“Sports graphic design always caught my eye, so I wanted to see what I could do – if I could design the stuff that I was seeing,” he said.
“So, in my spare time, I started playing around with Photoshop because it was something that really interested me, too. I wanted to put both together – sports and design – and see what I could do from there.”
It was the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic that compelled Hirshberg to go back to school to improve his skills, and he enrolled at TFS.
Shortly after graduating, he saw the Orlando Magic job ad on Twitter and decided to apply – not thinking he’d get an interview, much less the job.
“I didn’t think it was going to go anywhere, to be honest with you, but I got an interview and it went well from there. Now, I’m their only international employee,” he said, noting that he will likely remain based in Toronto until the COVID-19 pandemic settles down in Florida.
Hirshberg’s ultimate goal is for his graphic design work with the Orlando Magic – which so far has included Spanish Heritage Month billboards, schedule fliers and sponsor posters – to catch the eye of the marketing and design departments of his hometown team, the Toronto Raptors.
“It’s awesome just working for an NBA team, but my ultimate goal is to work for the Raptors at some point in their design department,” he said.
“I’ve always wanted to work with the Raptors since I was young, so I think this is a good stepping-stone to help get me to reach that goal in the future.”