In his prime, Bob Ross captured America’s attention with the stroke of a brush. Throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, he established himself as a major educational artist, guiding viewers through a fast-paced landscape through the joy of drawing, which aired for 31 seasons on PBS affiliates across the country. And while the final episode aired in 1994, Ross’ legacy has not only continued, but is experiencing a renaissance as well. Younger generations discover Ross decades later. Is it because of its reassuring unknown aesthetics? Or maybe because of her massive hairstyle?
Regardless of the reason, the artist is still current, though Bob Ross: Coincidence, Betrayal, and Greed, a new Netflix documentary introduces audiences to Ross’ extended story. Long before he appeared on TV, Ross was fond of art, and carved out a niche for himself in this niche in Florida. The documentary aims to follow that personal journey, from his Air Force training to an art tour of the East Coast. And of course, the complicated relationship between him and the family that changed the course of his legacy for years.
early years D-Bob Ross
Before Ross became a staple in the art world, he grew up in Florida with his mom and dad. He left school in the ninth grade and worked in carpentry for some time before losing part of his index finger. He later changed his career and joined the Air Force in 1961. As an eventual sergeant, he worked in Alaska, a place that inspired many of the landscapes he later painted in episodes the joy of drawing. Ross’ military career forced him to scream and drive away those who depended on him, which is why he said that when he left the army, He decided not to raise his voice again.
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During his time in the army, Ross became fond of drawing, although it was difficult for him to communicate with the instructors he had along the way. Finally, he found The joy of oil painting by Bill Alexander. Alexander’s demeanor was very different from that reported by Ross – flowery and boisterous – the German painter’s style proved to be in keeping with that of Ross, although his method of teaching was not.
Bob Ross’ beginnings in the world of painting
Upon leaving the army, Ross began his career as a painter. Back in Florida, he studied with Alexander, where he perfected the wet-on-wet technique for which he was famous. Between selling technical and teaching courses through Alexander’s company, Ross made a steady living. But that all began to change when Ross met a student named Annette Kowalski, who attended one of Ross’s classes after falling in love with Alexander. It turns out that Kowalski shared Ross’ many concerns, eventually encouraging him to go his own way, leave Alexander’s business, and start his own company with the support of the Kowalski family.
Kowalski saw Ross as a star, and his persona connected with the masses. Known for his distinctive Afro hair (which he apparently didn’t like, but continued to get curly as it became part of his trademark) and calm voice, he was the antithesis of Alexander’s rhythm, but quite similar in artistic style.
Stardom and declining health
After leaving Alexander, Ross and Kowalskis developed a huge company under the name Bob Ross Inc., and not only did the company own the series. the joy of drawing (The Pleasure of Painting), which was bit by bit sweeping the United States, but introduced a series of artistic products. Alexander might argue that these products were largely based on his own line, though Ross continued to produce them with the help of Webber Arts.
In subsequent years, Ross’ second wife, who owned a 50/50 company, died of cancer. This left Ross as a minority owner of the company that bears his name. This became increasingly difficult when Ross was diagnosed with lymphoma. In his final hours, he attempted to change ownership of his name and intellectual property to his half-brother Jimmy and son Steve. While the paperwork was being finalized, ownership of the company (and many of Ross’ assets) passed to the Kowalski family. Ross died on July 4, 1995. To this day, Bob Ross Inc. It is run by the Kowalski family.
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