Joanna Tebbs Young
CIRCLES OF COMMUNITY
This is the seventh in a series of everyday stories about everyday people in our community.
When you talk with Rutland photographer and web designer, Andrew Christie, you may pick up on a slight accent. Born in Scotland into a successful business family, Andrew lived in England for a time before moving to Long Island, New York with his mother and step-father when he was a teenager. It is diversity such as this that keeps Andrew’s creativity alive today.
First coming to Vermont after high school when he attended UVM, Andrew studied marketing as well as French and English.
“I was drawn to marketing — the creative energy of it,” Andrew said, “And how people connect with each other in life and business.”
Back in New York after graduation, Andrew worked in a small art department, where he learned some desktop publishing. And although he enjoyed living in NYC, absorbing its energy and the creative inspiration he gathered there, he wanted a change. In 1998, four years after leaving UVM, he found himself back in Vermont, in Rutland. “Vermont is closer to how I like to live,” Andrew explained. “It’s like Scotland.
“Rutland is a friendly place, a good place for people like me who are interested in doing their own thing. There are lots of creative people here.”
But Andrew doesn’t rely solely on the Rutland muses. After working at BROC in the early 2000s helping people start their own small businesses, he went out on his own around 2008. The work he now does building websites, taking photographs, and creating videos can be done from anywhere. This is a good thing for Andrew, as he prefers not to be tied down. He’s not one to stay still for very long.
Andrew loves to travel around the area, exploring the countryside and nearby cities. “Being close to Burlington, Saratoga, Boston… it’s my sense of adventure.” With a sister who is a photographer, and a cousin, Bunny Christie, who won a Tony for her stage design, he said he got this adventurous, creative spirit from his family. “We’re all searching for something. It’s how I keep the fire lit.”
Keeping that fire lit also includes taking trips back to New York, where in 2004 he took his first photography class. He was hooked. The class, held at the International Center for Photography in NYC, “bought lots of interesting and creative energy,” he explained. He is now a member of many photography organizations, such as the Photography Institute.
Always, as he said, “looking for new avenues,” Andrew is looking forward to focusing more on video, including making short films. Self taught in code and programming, he said that everything he has learned so far, “seems to leading in this direction.”
“Learning is a continual process,” Andrew believes. And so is his search for inspiration. “The different places I’ve lived, the jobs I’ve had, it all keeps the creative energy going.”
Andrew’s photography and examples of his work can be seen at andrewdchristie.com