Fine Art

The joy of Bob Ross


While Bob Ross was enthralling the masses with the joy of painting, his instructional public-television program promoting misty landscapes and “happy clouds,” a team of certified instructors on the ground was indoctrinating others in the Bob Ross style. Those experts trained new experts, and, 14 years after his death, there are more than 15,000 certified instructors from here to Turkey teaching others how to paint “happy little glaciers” with fan brushes and paint knives.


Bob Ross oil-painting class
December 19, 10 a.m., $50
Nevada School of the Arts

Five live in Southern Nevada, one of whom, Nancy Johnson, a certified Ross landscape instructor, will teach a class at the Nevada School of the Arts on December 19. It’s the second of two such art classes offered this month by the school. If it draws, officials say that there could be more.

Sadly, attendees won’t experience the calming Ross and his often-parodied catchphrases, trademark Caucasian afro and dreamy voice that drew in followers from Sunday painters to channel-surfing stoners. Ross died from lymphoma in 1995 at age 52, but his cult following thrives. Still, for one morning, beginners can experience what Ross created after he fell in love with the snow-capped mountains of Alaska decades ago.

Registration is required; the class is limited to 15.

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