Former OTC student lets paintings do the talking

Former OTC student lets paintings do the talking

Friday, September 21, 2012

Media Contact

College Director of Communications
417.447.2655 publicinfo@otc.edu
Steve Koehler
Coordinator of Publications (417) 447-2666 koehlers@otc.edu

Gillian Moore lets her painting speak for her.

The former OTC student needs to since she was born with a speech impediment 23 years ago.

"I can speak better on canvas. Painting gives me somewhere to escape to and I can let my feelings out on the canvas," Moore said.

The Michigan native is turning her talent into a business by teaching painting classes at RSVPaint in downtown Springfield.

There, customers pay for a two-hour painting session with Moore or any of the other artists, who give customers a chance to learn how to paint something the artist has designed.

Emily Monroe, who owns RSVPaint, said she met Moore after she answered an advertisement for art instructors for the store.

"She came in for a tryout and painted a picture of pearts that we now use in the class. Its a very handsome piece," she said.

Moore said the speech impediment has been something she and her three siblings all have and have had to cope with over the years.

"I used to go to intense speech therapy through grade school. It's hard. It impacts your writing. If you can't speak the words correctly, its hard to learn how to spell them correctly," she said.

But speaking her mind with her painting is not a problem. Influenced by Japanese anime art, Moore has done several paintings in that style, which she started doing again in college.

"My high school art teacher told me to stop painting anime but in college they encouraged me to begin again. At OTC, they let you do what you want and they help you explore things. We were told not to worry about failing," she said.

Since attending OTC, Moore has transferred to Missouri State University, where she is furthering her art studies. She wants to eventually return to Michigan for post-graduate studies and either teach or paint.

Now, as an instructor at a local business, Moore is using the teaching techniques she learned at OTC.

"I will be there to answer their questions about technique and such, but I want to push them to explore their own artistic ideas," she said.

Steve Koehler is coordinator of media relations at Ozarks Technical Community College.