Aspiring painters and art enthusiasts will be aware of the gentleman Bob Ross as he one of the most influential painters who had the love for teaching his art to his fellowmen. Bob’s instructional TV show The Joy of Painting served as a virtual school for many painters during the 1980s, and he is still a popular figure among painters over the internet even after two decades of his death. Continue reading to know more information about the life, career, and net worth of Bob Ross.
Early Life & Biography
Ross was born on 29th October, 1942, in Daytona Beach, Florida, the United States. His father Jack was a carpenter while his mother Ollie Ross was a waitress and he had a half-brother named Jim. Bob was an animal lover from his childhood, and it is said that he used to care for snakes, alligators, and armadillo too. He had a squirrel named Peapod which accompanied him in some of his show’s episodes. He left school and went on to help his father in carpentry and lost a portion of his index finger while using the table saw.
Bob married his first wife Vivian Ridge in 1965, and the couple had a son named Steven Ross. Steven was also a skillful painter who accompanied Bob in some episodes of his show. After divorcing his first wife Vivian in 1977, Ross married his second wife Jane in 1977. Jane Ross died of cancer in 1992 and Ross went on to marry Lynda Brown in 1995. Two months after his marriage with Lynda, Bob died of Lymphoma.
Career, Awards & Nominations
When Ross was 18 years old, he joined the US Air Force as a medical records technician and gradually rose to the posts of master sergeant and first sergeant. He worked with the US Air Force for 20 years and used to create painted arts during his free time for sale. He even attended some painting classes and realized that none of the classes taught students how to paint.
He was very much impressed with the TV show The Magic of Oil Painting by Bill Alexander who taught Alla Prima painting style. He mastered the style and began to sell paintings that earned him a good sum of money. He moved to Florida and studies painting from Bill Alexander, joining his painting company.
One of his well-wishers Annette Kowalski advised Ross to start his own company which he did arranging funds from Annette, his wife and himself. The company initially struggled a lot but slowly gained fame which paved the way for him to host a TV show.
He hosted the show The Joy of Painting from 1983 to 1994 that was aired on the PBS channel which was a huge success garnering much fame and fortune. He establishes the firm Bob Ross Inc. through which he supplied paintings, wrote tutorial books and marketed his painting class technique in the name of the Bob Ross Method. After his death, his paintings were donated to the PBS Stations.
Net Worth & Earnings
Though he struggled a lot initially with his painting line, he managed to stabilize the business over the coming years. His establishment was very much successful as his paintings were on demand and his instructional books made good sales. In addition to this, his TV show was very famous at that time which contributes significantly to his net worth of $6 million at the time of his death.
Bob Ross died of lymphoma on July 4, 1995, at the age of 52. Though many legendary painters have contributed a lot to the art, Bob stands out of them all because he was not only a talented painter but also a dedicated teacher.