I absolutely suck at painting. For real. But I love, love, love to watch Bob Ross paint. It’s like seeing magic happen right before my eyes. He was truly gifted and his voice was so very soothing. I guess that’s why he remains popular nearly 25 years after his death.
I also love that just about the time I’m thinking: Ok, he’s surely going to mess this painting up bad! All of a sudden it pops and you have this dazzling work of art. That’s the magic part. He would simple say it was “a happy little accident” as he continued to paint his “happy little trees.”
- Bob Ross was born in Daytona Beach in 1942. He was raised in Orlando. Later in life he also lived in Alaska, which led to the recurrent theme of snowy mountains in his work.
- His biggest fan was a little squirrel he saved from near death. “Squirrely Wirrelly Brown” loved to keep Bob company while he painted.
- All of his paintings were donated to PBS stations. He derived his income from his line of art supplies and instructional books.
- He typically painted three copies of his paintings. One he would complete before the show. He would keep it off camera as a guide for the painting he would complete on the show. A third he would paint in more detail for his instructional books.
- His signature white man ‘fro was not natural. It was a perm. He didn’t like it that much but he kept it because his fans loved it.
- He served in the U.S. Air Force for 20 years. He retired with the rank of master sergeant. When he left, he vowed to never yell or raise his voice again.