I love watching the old public tv show, “The Joy Of Painting” with Bob Ross. He was an incredibly talented painter, & there is something so calming about watching him create his beautiful works of art. I also especially enjoy the bits of wisdom he shared through each episode. Not only bits of wisdom about painting, but about life in general.
I was watching his show recently & he was painting a beautiful mountain scene in the fall. During the course of painting, Mr. Ross said some interesting things.
The first thing he mentioned was as he was painting a lake. To create dimension, he used dark & light colors together. He said something like, “Don’t conceal all your dark areas or the painting will become flat.” Immediately it made me think of the overly positive people of the world. I don’t mean the average person who tries to be positive, but the ones who refuse to say anything negative or see anything but the good in people. When people don’t admit that sometimes things are less than perfect & happy, they often are much the same way- flat. They express only one mood- happy. Honestly, I find this incredibly annoying to be around. Not that I want to be around people who are always miserable either. Somewhere in the middle is so much more comfortable & I think also healthy. People who are real & honest are the most interesting people, in my opinion anyway, probably because they have many different aspects to their personalities & different moods. They’re also more comfortable to be around, because you know they won’t judge you if you are anything less than completely positive & happy. Many overly positive people also can come across very invalidating & shaming. For example, if you’re laid up with a broken leg, it’s ok to be upset about that. The unhealthy, overly positive type of person will say something like you should be glad it happened because now you have the time off to catch up on whatever hobbies you enjoy. That comment can make you feel badly for being upset that you are in a miserable situation, even though you have every right to be upset.
Another interesting thing he mentioned was that you need darkness to show the light. How true is that! If you think of it in the natural realm, if you light up an average light bulb, it will look very different in the dark than it will on a sunny day. In the dark, even a very dim bulb can look extremely bright. Yet, in the sunlight, even the brightest bulb will appear pretty dim. The contrast of dark & light always makes light appear brighter.
The same things happen with good & bad things in life. The bad, or darker, things that happen make you appreciate the good, or lighter, things. If you have only good things happen, you can count on not appreciating anything good that happens to you simply because that is the norm for you. There is nothing to compare your experiences to that will make them appear worth appreciating. If there is a balance of both good & bad things, however, the bad things truly will make you appreciate the good things. The good things will look so much better in contrast to the bad, just like that dim light bulb will look especially bright in a very dark room.
It was kinda strange, realizing these things from watching a man paint a pretty landscape, but I hope you found them interesting like I did. And, his show can be found on YouTube & I think it was Pluto TV where I found it. Very worth checking out if you have the chance!