Industry News

MacPherson’s Fun Committee Parties Like a Ross Star

The MacPherson’s Emeryville office had been looking forward to a special day this season for quite some time. We cleared our schedules and marked the day on our calendars months beforehand. Something holiday related? If enjoying happy little accidents, highfiving over misty mountain tops and honoring Bob Ross’s legacy is a holiday, sign us up again!

Our office-wide painting class last month was long anticipated by fans and newbies alike. The Category Management team came up with the idea after our People Department put out a call for events infused with one of our values, Having Fun. They were inspired by the Bob Ross demos at Dealer Workshop; in fact, the Table of Contents in the Winter Back-to-School Buyer’s Guide features a painting from workshop by Assistant Category Manager Isaly Murrell, which then inspired the diorama that Senior Graphic Designer Corinne Smith created for the cover and the “happy little trend” spread on page four!

The original plan was to follow along to a Bob Ross YouTube Video. When Category Manager Jeanine Davids called up Joan at Bob Ross inc to get their advice, they pointed us to Certified Ross Instructor (CRI) Ted Simpson, a Certified Bob Ross Instructor from Chicago, so that we would have the best possible experience with learning the Bob Ross technique. 

Above: wonderfully varied mountain ranges from our participants, from Accounting to IT.

At MacPherson’s, we constantly think about art supplies. We inventory them, package them and track them. We talk about them on the phone. Photograph them, order them. We curate assortments of them, brainstorm how to merchandise them, and write about them (hello!). We even test them, and use them on our own time. But to actually sit for two hours as a group and all make the same thing, with the same materials, got us all in a completely different headspace. Not only did we enjoy communing with Bob’s inviting painting style, we enjoyed sitting with our friends and teammates, interacting with art supplies the way Bob intended.

Tucker Russell, Brand Management, pre-misted mountaintop; Bruce Graham, Information Technology, prepping his painting knife for the next color!

The relaxing, fun and simple Bob Ross painting process is invigorating for those of us who are not used to painting. For those of us who create art on the side or have an art background, following the step-by-step process can be outside of our comfort zones (as we first started laying down mountainous shadows, those of us with art degrees could be heard muttering frustrated expletives because our happy little peak wasn’t perfect). After a bit of initial fretting here and there, we all loosened up and had a ball.

Happy painters show off their happy paintings! Wendy Yang, Hnin Kyaw, and Jack Mahoney, Accounting; Molly Meister and Vicky Toth, Inventory;
Corinne Smith, Creative Services.

Thank you Ted, Joan and the team at Bob Ross Inc. for inspiring us to pick up our painting knives!

Inspired? Retailers interested in holding a Bob Ross event should start by contacting a CRI via, visiting or calling their toll free number at 800-262-7677. Have you already done a Bob Ross event? We’d love to feature your story! Reach out to us art artdogblog (@)

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