Bob Ross, the bushy-haired art instructor who taught PBS viewers in his soothing, hypnotic voice how to paint “happy little trees,” died of cancer at 52.
Ross died Tuesday at his home in Orlando, Fla.
As host of the Public Broadcasting System series “The Joy of Painting,” Ross introduced landscape oil painting to millions.
His show, taped at WIPB in Muncie since 1983, aired on virtually every PBS station in the United States, plus stations in Hong Kong, Iran, Japan, Mexico, the Philippines, South Korea and Turkey.
Ross was known as much for his frizzy hair and gentle manner as for his quick and simple brush technique.
While daubing a barn or a cloudbank, he would cajole viewers to be creative with their “own little world” and add “happy little trees” to their landscapes.
Ross taped a promo for MTV two years ago that had him painting the MTV logo and declaring the music-video network the “home of happy little trees.”