James Holmes

Bob Ross Taught Me to Paint & Sings about Happy Trees

Filed By James Holmes | July 26, 2012 3:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment
Tags: Bob Ross, Bob Ross remix, Bob Ross Singing, learning to paint, PBS Remixed, The Joy of Painting

Jim-Seascape.jpgThis is f*cking amazing! Thanks you PBS for making your own viral videos of your stars!

I love me some Bob Ross and his Joy of Painting. Every Sunday as a teenager, I would watch his show while getting ready for church, and more than once it made me late. Sorry, Jesus - a white man with an afro was making me more zen than a three hour Pentecostal shout feast.

I think it all started with my dad, also a painter and a PBS fan. My earliest memories with Bob were with him. Seeing as the show started a year before I was born, Bod, like his friend Mr. Rodgers, was there for me since birth. I may not have picked up the paintbrush yet, but I was learning.

When I reached high school and the time came for oil painting my sophomore year, it was Bob Ross paints that we used, and one technique we learned was his fast "wet-on-wet" style (insert off-color remark here). I was finally putting all those years to use.

Though I became and remain more of an acrylic man, his lessons stuck with me - and I can still pop out a landscape in under an hour if I feel like it (I accept PayPal or cash).

My first test of my Bob Ross skills came my senior year of high school. A few days before the fall play, The Curious Savage, opened, I was asked to produce a sea scape for a prop. I never half ass anything, but I only had a short amount of time. So I picked up a brush and pallet knife, and by the end on my art class I produced the above painting. Not too bad for a rushed job.

The larger test came from the spring musical. Despite what my Sing-off posts may have led you to believe, I sadly lack the ability to sing, dance, or act - very disappointing for a gay man in love with show tunes. I avoided the theater department until my senior year when I befriended our foreign exchange student and fellow artist from Finland, Sonia, and she pulled me in.

This time it was not a one hour project - it was painting a giant castle and forest for the backdrop for Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella. Let's just say I painted a lot of big happy trees. Check out the pic below:


Sonia and I ended up starting a business for the summer painting murals in homes and the public schools (as I said, PayPal and cash), but that is a different story. Either way, thanks Bob.

All this to say, when I saw this video today it brought back a lot of memories. I was truly sad when Bob died in 1995. I felt I had lost a friend or, though he was straight, a gay uncle. But PBS kept his show going - and it is still on the air today. Check out some of Bob's best phrases remixed into a very chill and puffy cloud filled song. Load your 2" brush with Titanium White and let's get started.

(H/T to Joe.My.God)

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