Bob Ross was an incredible painter. He was the host of the 26-minute long show The Joy of Painting. The popular series ran for 11 years on PBS. Each episode featured Ross instructing viewers in the art of oil painting, breaking the entire process down into simple, easy to follow steps. His voice was soft and steady, and each episode was relaxing as well as empowering. The goal, after all, was to demonstrate that art was something accessible by everyone.
An early episode of the show’s second season recently surfaced that was especially touching. Ross begins the show by telling viewers about a man he had met shortly before filming:
Just recently I was doing a demonstration in a mall, and I had a man come tome and he said, ‘Bob, I could never paint because I’m colorblind. All I can see is gray tones.’ So I thought today we’d do a picture in gray just to show you that anyone can paint.
He spends the remainder of the episode painting a breathtaking picture of mountains on a wintery day using nothing but various shades of gray. Ross explains that “any color will work, as long as you use the basic method”, which he demonstrates. He proceeds to show how to create beautiful looking rocky mountains in just minutes, saying:
Isn’t that fantastic? That you can make whole mountains in minutes? And you can do it. There’s no big secret to it. All you need is a dream in your heart.
Watch the episode here:
Ross passed away in 1995, but he left us with some wonderful words of wisdom.