Prototype Abstract #1 – First Paint by number painting.
In the post World War II era of the 1950′s America elevated its famous can do spirit into a place where dreams really do come true. Dan Robbins was one of those people. Dan made a modest living by producing washable paints sets for kids when one day he remembered how Leonardo de Vinci would hand out numbered patterns to his apprentices and thought , “Why not do the same for anyone who wants to paint but does not have the talent to draw or mix paint colors”. Dan quickly took his idea and prototype to the owner of Palmer Paint Company Max Klein . It was to be a terrific merger and as they say, the rest is history! The years between 1951 through 1954 they sold 12 million paint by number kits alone.
“I painted it myself” became household conversation! It rapidly was the number one leisure activity of the day!
These are just a few samplings of Dan Robbins paint-by-numbers paint kits.
Dan Robbins and Doug James teamed up to produce the now very famous paint-by-numbers Mona Lisa paint kit. Doug once said, “While paint-by-numbers weren’t ‘art’ at the time of their origin, they certainly are now, by virtue of ideas and concepts which have evolved into being”.
Nowadays, paint-by-number paintings have become collector items!
“Picture Walls” are popping up in homes with paint-by-number paintings.
I particularly love this gallery wall !
These days its becoming increasingly difficult to find paint-by-number paintings in antique stores, but you can now find replicas like this Poodle painting at Urban Outfitters for only $19.99 !
If you are fortunate enough to run across a Dan Robbins paint-by-number painting I suggest you snatch it up ! Its now an iconic American form of Art!