Client Interview - Maya Mi Oh
Rainbow Art School is owned and operated by Maya Mi Oh. In 2009, Maya and her family moved to Newfoundland when her husband was offered a job in St. John’s.
Ms. Oh herself is a trained artist, having completed both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Fine Art in South Korea. She enjoys working with a range of materials and art styles, including oil, print, sketching, sculpting, and pottery. She also worked as a graphic designer and website designer for ten years in her home country.
After searching the local job market, she soon realized that the number of professional jobs available for a classically trained artist was limited. However, she was ultimately inspired by her daughter to go into business. “I wanted to send my daughter to art school, but it was hard to find one,” she explains. “So I started my art school for my daughter.”
Maya initially had a lot of questions related to starting her own business, and she turned to AXIS Career Services for answers. “It was a huge help,” she insists. Without AXIS help, there would be no Rainbow Art School.” AXIS assisted Maya with everything from researching the local market and developing her business plan, to meeting with city officials, creating content for the business website, and registering her business with the province.
Rainbow Art School began offering arts and crafts classes to students’ ages 3-18 in September, 2011. Students can book individual or group classes to learn the history and techniques of various eastern and western styles. Maya’s personal philosophy on art education goes far beyond composition and brush work. Instead, she draws on her own experiences to inspire creativity and self-expression in her students. As she explains, “With my experience, I encourage my students to access something they want to express with various types of art.”
Maya has a loyal group of young artists, including several standouts. One student recently won an art competition among several schools in the city, and according to his parents, it was all because of what he learned at Rainbow Art School. She regularly receives inquiries about adult classes, and is working with AXIS Career Services to look at ways to better serve her growing clientele.
Maya offers this advice for aspiring entrepreneurs: “Starting is important, once you start your business it will move on. If it is too hard to start, get consultation from AXIS, they really know how to make you get ahead.