Post a Reminiscence
We still have two paint by number kits decorating our wall. They’ve
been displayed in our living room for almost 30 years. I found
them in a local store in Dubuque, Iowa. I’d never seen Norman
Rockwell paint by number kits. The painting of the small girl
and the doctor and one called the flagpole sitter took me almost
six months to paint. I painted a third but it was lost in a move.
Perhaps someone knows the history of these kits.
January 14, 2003
Good morning, I’ve heard of an organization that will take
the photo you provide and turn
it into a paint-by-numbers drawing. I thought this would be a
great gift. Have you guys ever heard of this. Any help you can
provide would be greatly appreciated.
January 23, 2003
I’m 49, and loved paint-by-number when I was a kid. I always
aspired to the biggest canvas with the most colors. I always thought
doing a “Waterlilies” or “Irises” would
be fabulous. If those weren’t available, I was sure it would
be only a matter of time. Being Catholic, I wasn’t keen
the “Last Supper” because I saw it everywhere. Now
that I’m retired, I would love to resume the hobby, but
the subjects available are pretty poor. Is a company planning
to manufacture the good
stuff? Wal-Mart has a paltry supply but I contacted the company’s
local distributor who only had a pair of watercolor puppies that
caught my eye. I’m ashamed to admit the kit contains twelve
When I painted, I felt talented. I bragged that I didn’t
wait for colors to dry, giving a better flow to the line. Since
schools can’t afford to offer the arts, it’s a shame
kids don’t create anything after kindergarten crayons.
February 12, 2003
My grandmother in her older years took up pairnting by numbers
and believe it or not she did appx. 150 paintings by number the
company at the time wanted to do a interview w/ her but she declined
,the comapny she ordered painting from was Master Craft I think
and we have some of those pictures in our house now – pink
lay and blue boy – but she also did some pictures that were
huge. Unfortunately a lot of them were burned in a fire in storage
after she past. Through out the family all of us have some of
her work including the Last Supper. She must have done that picture
at least 4 times.
February 15, 2003
I too have been a kit painter. This led me to use all the leftover
colors to create original paintings. I now have an associate of
art degree that was in some respect from my need to paint. While
the kits were restrictive they did spark my need for art that
continues today. I sometimes use ART WHEN I WORKWITH MY CLIENTS!
I am a staff psychotherapist at a womens maximum security prison.
Thanks for listening.
February 18, 2003
To whom it may concern: I have absolutely enjoyed this website.
I was a product of the 50s and had my paint by numbers box of
canvas boards like so many other kids. I can’t say that
I finished any of them, but they were fun. For me they opened
a window for the exploration of art. I never considered them as
a part of my decision to become an art teacher, but as I look
back . . . they might have played a role. As an artist, art teacher,
I abhore the idea of paint by numbers . . . from an educational
and artist’s point of view, but this exhibit, forces me
to think again, because they might have been more of an influence
than I’ve given them credit. Interesting to ponder.
Thanks for this research and exploration.
Mrs. Sharyn Bieber
February 24, 2003
I was born in 1945 and as a small child remember my mother painting
by number. She did a series of Emette Kelly (small) pictures and
two larger ballerina pictures for my bedroom. She is 86 now and
I have given her a paint by number to work on. I am doing one
also with her. I do alot of original watercolors and truly love
to paint. I never tried a paint by number but I think I’m
HOOKED. My interest and taste are for the classic reproductions
-- where can I get kits of these? I am searching the web as we
speak. I was amazed by the story of the White House staff doing
paint by numbers. I worked for the FBI 1965-1966 and was excited
to see the one by J. Edgar Hoover (smile).
March 1, 2003
My father used to travel a lot when I was a child. Whenever he
went out of town for quite a while he would always bring me back
a present. One time he brought me a paint by number set of the
Last Supper. I had done many paint by numbers before but this
would prove to be the toughest yet! I worked on it on and off
for about 3 years until it was finally completed. My parents
were very pleased when I presented them with the finished product
for their anniversary gift. They had it framed and it hung in
the dining room for many years. Now my parents are both gone but
I still have that Last Supper painting and it now hangs in my
dining room. I have wonderful memories of working on paint by
numbers. My children are teenagers now but when they
were younger they also did a few paint by numbers. Unfortunately,
they were not as excited as I was. But then again we didn’t
have video games, etc. when I was a kid so I loved the paint by
numbers. I’m glad to see it’s making a comeback!
March 6, 2003
I just spent about 45 minutes looking at your Paint by Numbers
Online Exhibit. As a child I remember my grandmother painstakingly
painting by numbers. This was in the early sixties. Your exhibit
tells of the pride individuals had when they completed their work.
I know my grandmother particularly was enamored with her work
and did have it framed and hung. All of her children received
her paint by number pictures for Christmas. Ours hung over our
piano. I only wish my parents still had it just for old times
sake. Thank you for the walk down memory lane.
March 8, 2003
My mother painted a pair of French looking ladies in 1958. She
signed and dated them.
I have them hanging in the living room of my new townhouse and
just love them. She is gone now, and everyday I look at them and
smile. I am sure, wherever her spirit is, she is very
happy that I have them up for all to enjoy. However, I must admit,
most people do not know what they are.
Nancy L. Schindler
March 9, 2003
At one point in my parents’ lives they were having a hard
time emotionally (maybe from having 6 children?). This would have
been in the early-mid 1950s. Anyway, the doctor recommended my
father start doing Paint-by-numbers. That’s all I know about
the story, but I thought it was interesting that this is what
the doctor would have recommended for mental relaxation.
April 11, 2003
I lived in Michigan in the 50s and did PBN as a child. Then last
year I started collecting the old ones. Then I decided to do one
from Craft House myself with oils - what a mess. Could someone
please tell me the tricks to doing a nice paint by number. My
paint is globbed and I can’t make fine lines.
April 12, 2003
I purchased two swan paint by number paintings and completed them
and gave them to my mom to hang in the bathroom. I enjoyed doing
it and was proud of my work. I was probably 10. Later I discovered
sewing and spent a lot of time on that. My mother threw them away
when I was at college. They hung in the bathroom for years.
I wonder how many other mothers could not wait to trash their
April 26, 2003
Hello, I am an artist/art teacher born in 1950. I did paint by
numbers when I was a little girl growing up in Detroit. Today
I have continued by painting over photographs in the same style.
I received my masters in art/photography and after 35 years am
still painting over photos. My website is maclancyphotos.com Paint
by numbers remain my first and favorite connection to the art
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