Categories: Do It Yourself

5 Bob Ross Techniques that Will Elevate your Painting

5 Bob Ross Techniques that Will Elevate your Painting

Bob Ross is the king of painting techniques that are easy to follow and give you so much pay back. Bob is known for his signature sayings and calming voice that melts anyone listening. His technique to approaching painting and doing it as a whole has been a God send to people who want to learn. Painting is one of those things that you don’t have to be good at but its nice to be. Bob did not originally start out being a painter himself! He was in the army and served in the air force as a medical records technician. 

He inspired many as a television host and painter that was always calm and collected. His paintings were all beautiful landscapes that just makes you fall in love. He was on television for over 10 years inspiring young artist all over the world. I happened to stumble upon him one day and took a liking to his art and his demeanor. I literally would fall asleep at night listening and watching his tutorials which I feel has helped me alot in my paintings. Watching him quite often has helped me see his structure and techniques that has made him an art LEGEND! 

Acrylic Paint

Acrylic paint is fast drying and vivid for art use and other decorative activities. Bob Ross swore by these paints and in almost every episode he used the same few paints. These paints made the painting, of course but it was the quality of them. He used thick and vibrant colors that really stood out among the canvas but also looked natural

The trees looked like real life trees and everything else! This is how good his technique was and how good the product he used. His paints were nothing too out there but he made them work in such a way that all paintings looked life like. The type of paint you use matters in your art. Try getting painting materials that are true to quality and will work with you, not against you! You don’t have to grab the most expensive thing but just good quality. It will save you lots of time, frustration and money.

Paint Thinner

Bob Ross used odorless paint thinner as part of his painting technique. He used this to thin out the paint before going in and painting but he also used it to clean his brushes. The acrylic paints can be quite thick which us good for the vibrancy that you achieve. It can however be too thick which makes for a bad application. Usung this paint thinner helps thin out the paint and you apply an even yet vibrant coat of paint. 

I don’t know about you but cleaning paint brushes with merely water can make it so hard on you. I do this everytime and it takes a while to get the previous color out or you paint the previously into the new color you just added. Either way can be so irritating in the art making process. This technique will definitely help you in keeping your utensils clean and your paintings looking how they should.

Using Liquid White

Using this technique is made for a technique called wet in wet painting. This is actually a techniques that is not popular in modern painters and is actually hard to achieve. Bob Ross not only perfected this technique but became known for it. The base coat allows you actually blend colors right on to the canvas instead of having to blend alot on your palette. This technique is time efficient and also helps with over working your mixing hand. If you ever saw one of Bob Ross’ paintings, his art is always seemless and effortless in the different dimensions. 

Now we know its that wet on wet blending that made it seem less more than normal. It does take precision because your are mixing directly onto the canvas. This can be intimidating to a beginner if you are not familiar with color mixing. I suggest watching a few of his tutorials so you can see how he does it. Its nothing wrong with learning before doing just so you won’t waste products and have an idea of what to do. The more you know the better!

See Also


Blending is a huge part of Bob’s legacy and technique! His blending was impeccable. Not a tree or mountain, cabin or snowy bank was out of place. He was so precise in the details and blending colors to the right color. He would blend colors all the time and all it took was a few colors to make a painting full of bliss! He would do these beautiful landscapes that required shadowing and other 3 dimensional character. He would use the same colors to blend and make a painting that popped out at you!

Blending is an integral part of lots of art technique and design. Even in makeup, blending is like #1 after application placement. Bob definitely would slay a face if he ever decided to get into makeup! The brushes used also played a role in the blending. Brushes can bend and get out if shape because of use and placement, this important in making details. The brushes creat and follow the direction of your hand!

Take It Easy

Bob Ross was the king of taking it easy! He never made his audience feel like you had to be good or be so precise with your painting! He talked you into painting with grace and ease so that you enjoyed yourself but learned. After all painting should be relaxing and fun. That can be taken away if we become fixated on perfecting our art instead of gradually growing into it over time.

He spoke with encouragement and simple instructions its seems to not to overwhelm his audience. I think his focus was mainly having people enjoy painting instead of perfecting it. The way he carried himself and taught his passion in life was timeless and I wish he was here to greet us with more grace!

Which technique have you tried? Which Bob Ross tutorials are your favorite? Which technique you didn’t see in the list? Let us know in the comments below.

Featured image:
Ralanda Banks

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