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Mollie the Painter

Mollie at the 2011 Findlay Twp Fair in the Woodlands in August

When I hear the term “face painter” I tend to think of the “David Puddy” character on “Seinfeld.”  (Yeah, that’s right.) But for Mollie Stofan, a senior TV/video production major at RMU, face painting is helping to finance her future.

Mollie started her own face painting business in 2008 to help pay for college. But what started out as a way to supplement her income has really started to take off.

“I’m actually at the point now that I can barely handle the amount of business that I have,” she says. “Right now I’m in the process of teaching two girls how to paint so they can help me out.”

She’s been at it for three years now, working festivals, birthday parties, company picnics, and more, and she loves every minute of it. “It’s so rewarding that it’s so hard to call it ‘work’.”

The weirdest thing Mollie’s ever had to paint on someone’s face was a can of soup. She says her favorite design, however, is one she refers to as the “princess crown.” “Whenever I’m doing a birthday party, all the girls, both young and old, ask for this one most frequently.”

Besides painting, Mollie enjoys riding horses, and she’s actually won dozens of ribbons at shows around the area. “I don’t have my own horse—yet. But my landlord has a farm, so at least I have somewhere close to board my horse when I do get it.”

Mollie is also quite skilled at costume design and has won the scariest costume contest at RMU’s Halloween dance the last three years in a row. “Last year I was the devil; in 2009 I was a zombie, and the year before that I was a dead homecoming queen.”

Recently she landed a job at The ScareHouse in Etna, where she’ll be doing make-up on the actors in the haunts. “What’s interesting is that I am the only face painter. Everyone else has gone to school for make-up artistry.”

As for her  career, Mollie says she’d love to work at KDKA here in Pittsburgh. “I just completed an internship there this past summer, and it was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had.”

So will Mollie be “Mollie the Painter” forever? Probably not. But for the time being, she’s having a blast.

“I love my job so much! I get to make children smile every weekend.”

Visit Mollie’s Facebook page at

If you want to make a difference in the lives of RMU students like Mollie, give to the President’s Fund for Engaged LearningIn the past, President Dell’Omo has used this fund to increase scholarships and financial aid, send students abroad and to conventions, improve technology throughout campus, and support students in countless other ways.


Written by Valentine J. Brkich

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