Paint By Numbers: Start Of The Art

Thursday, January 17, 2013 - 9:52am

Dan Robbins developed a paiting craze that swept the nation in the 1950s.

The concept couldn't be more simple: Just paint the color into the section with the corresponding number.

It's called paint-by-numbers and its creator lives in metro Detroit.

In 1950, Dan Robbins had an idea that would grow to inspire budding artists.

The 87-year-old proudly displays the 50s fad in his West Bloomfield, Michigan home. From the very first paint by numbers image to a later Marilyn Monroe that was never marketed.

"I don't ever call them art. I call them the experience of picking up a brush, dipping it in paint," Robbins said.

The Cass Tech High School grad and Army veteran worked at the Palmer Paint Company on a washable paint set for kids. But Robbins said his boss wanted to reach more consumers and asked him to come up with something.

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