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Staff Profile: Juliette Christie

BY: Crystel Newman |

CATEGORIES: interview, jobs, rising sun pictures, rspvfx

M E E T  J U L I E T T E   C H R I S T I E 

How did a girl from the snowy slopes of Colorado with a career in finance end up at a visual effects studio across the other side of the world? And what on earth was she doing in a Black Hawk helicopter along the way?

Juliette hails from the poetically-named city of Golden, nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, USA. She and her three siblings used the hills of the former gold rush town as their playground during their childhood.

They would explore their local surroundings by hiking through the luscious green hills in summer and skiing and tobogganing on the shimmering white snowfields in winter. While playing outside, they had to keep a wary eye out for the resident mountain lion and her cubs. Juliette recalls having to bring all animals inside every night or they would end up as 'food on the street' for the mountain lion, which would stalk the district at night. 

After finishing school, Juliette left the small city and moved to Denver to attend university, where she studied engineering before transferring to Maths. While studying her MBA, she joined the Navy Reserves and began working in a bank. As part of her obligation to the Navy, Juliette would go to Hawaii for two weeks a year. After a few years she transferred out of banking and into defence contracting. Just as she was about to move to Australia for a job transfer, she was called up by the Navy and deployed to Iraq for 10 months where she ran military contractors. One of the perks she recalls was riding in black hawk helicopters!  

Returning home after her stint in Iraq, Juliette worked for another year in the US before an opportunity came up for her to work in Australia on a two year contract. So she moved half way across the world to the Australian desert to work in the remote town of Alice Springs. During the first years in her new role, she met Craig, an electronic engineer and part-time musician. Not knowing where the relationship would go, she decided to extend her contract for another two years..... and eight years later she left Alice Springs with her now-husband and her daughter Danielle! 

The family moved back to Craig's home town of Adelaide. Juliette was looking for a new job, and a specialist recruitment company secured her an interview at Rising Sun Pictures. The prospect of working in an industry  worlds apart from her previous career was exciting: Juliette was thrilled when she was officially offered a position, and in 2018 she joined the Rising Sun Pictures family. 

WHAT DO YOU DO IN ROLE?
I pull together financial data- timesheets, bids, change orders, estimates to complete, etc, to help production know where their project stands financially and how it changes week-to-week. I help find patterns of utilisation of our people, and where shows may be more or less efficient than normal, which can indicate problems that early detection can help head off.

WHAT’S THE MOST CHALLENGING THING YOU’VE FACED?
Motherhood! While also the most rewarding, it is a job that never turns off, where every step is a potential fall, and where you have to give your child the chance to fail so they can learn, when all you want to do is make sure they succeed at everything.

WHAT DO YOU ENJOY THE MOST ABOUT WORKING IN THE VFX INDUSTRY?
I love how excited everyone gets about their work and effort. While some of any job is 'slogging through', I treasure the moments where everyone is looking at some new shots, which is just that little extra bit of cool.

FAVOURITE MOVIE YOU HAVE WORKED ON? WHY?
Not many that I’ve done yet, but as someone raised on Disney classics, I’m very excited that we were on such a legendary sequence on ''Dumbo''. My generation grew up with Dumbo and Bambi, and my daughter loves them, so it was really exciting to see the finished product.

WHAT DO YOU ENJOY THE MOST ABOUT WORKING AT RSP?
The friendliness and diversity. We've got people from around the world working together to create something extraordinary.

WHAT DO YOU ENJOY THE MOST ABOUT LIVING IN ADELAIDE?
Being able to live in a decent sized house, but not be too far out from everything. We’ve got the city with concerts, sports, and festivals, the beach and the hills, and nothing more than 20 minutes away.

WHAT ARE YOUR INTERESTS / HOBBIES?
I enjoy a good book, mainly science fiction/fantasy/historical fiction, and baking.

TELL US SOMETHINGS ABOUT YOURSELF THAT WE DON’T KNOW?
I've taught canoeing to Scouts for over 20 years.

FAVOURITE MOVIE
There are so many great movies out there, but I’ll have to say: ''The Fifth Element'' .

FAVOURITE DRINK
It's gotta be spiced chai.

CRAZIEST THING YOU HAVE DONE
Driving my Toyota Yaris through flooded roads in Alice Springs - seriously, that was probably pretty stupid... but fun in the end. 

SUPERPOWER OF CHOICE AND WHY
Astral Projection - I’d love to be able to travel around the universe and see new things.

IF YOU COULD MEET ANYONE AT ALL, WHO WOULD IT BE AND WHY?
Nikola Tesla - he had ideas so ahead of his time that people are still trying to figure them out. I feel like if he’d had a Roy Disney to his Walt, then his ideas would have gotten the attention they merited, and he would have had the chance to develop them, jumping us ahead by a century.

PHOBIA
Crowds. When I’m in a crowd of strangers, I feel like they drain all my energy away and give nothing back.

WHAT THE WORLD NEEDS NOW IS….
Space - we need a new frontier to give those who don’t fit in the framework places to go where they can open up new worlds while they are free to be themselves and not fit into tighter rules and requirements.

ADVICE TO ASPIRING ARTISTS
While I don’t know art specifically, I know in any career that you not only need to know your specialisation, you need to learn how you fit into the whole: Avoid tunnel vision.

 

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