Sunday, June 27, 2010

Pinups! A Brief History

5,000: Years ago that a nude female was painted on a rock shelter in Algeria.

15th: Century Sandro Botticelli painted The Birth of Venus, wherein she rises from the sea a full-grown woman.

180: Number of "Varga Girls" Alberto Vargas illustrated for Esquire from 1940 to 1946.

6: Number of fingers on one hand one of the "Varga Girls" had, as Vargas struggled to paint one pinup a week under his 1944 contract. Another girl was missing an arm.

19th: Century early in which topless Algerian women appeared on postcards. Many had no stamps or message on them, suggesting they were kept by the original buyers or mailed in sealed envelopes.

1912: Year James Kane, a New York City photographer, is said to have developed a photo of an actress whose gown had slipped open, whereupon he exclaimed, "That's real cheescake!"

1946: Year Norma Jean Dougherty divorced her merchant marine husband, James. His family disapproved of her modeling; other military men did not.

1: Years later that she appeared in her first film as Marilyn Monroe.

1951: Year it's said that Irving Klaw paid Bettie Page--a 28 year-old new to New York City--$50 an hour to pose scantily clad. He then charged photographers $20 each to take her picture.

$1,000: Prize money that future Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown won in Cosmopolitan's America's Sexiest Man contest in 1982. Of his nude photographs, Brown said, "I'm not ashamed of my body."

$1,250,000: Amount of the insurance policy that Twentieth Century Fox took out on Betty Grable's legs at Lloyd's of London in 1943, embarassing the star.
All statistics courtesy of Allure magazine, because that's where I turn for all of my important research!


  1. I Love the ones that were painted on the sides of WW planes!

  2. I love Bettie Page! Can't help it.