Alliteration is the key to successful sleaze. Consider the examples above. With blazing bylines like that, you'll be buzzing louder than a spanish fly at a sex convention when you get home and take the wrappers off THAT steamy slick. You won't even have to bend down under the counter and try to peel the protective plastic of your paper dolls for a peek before your purchase! Any mag with so many enticing hard consonants in a row is guaranteed to deliver the goods......so listen up you pop-eyed patrons of pulch, practice putting a hard consonant in front of every word in your copy...that is if you want the cute cooch to coo. I practice my skills of alliteration at every opportunity, even when writing on my other bawdy blogs books and projects. A proper sleazy pseudonym also helps. Victor Minx (ed.)
Bill Ward, graduate of Pratt Institute, Brooklyn class of 1941. Let us now take a moment to thank his teachers. For a more complete biography of the master of conte crayon cleavage, read earlier post on his paperback cover illustrations below, and trust more Bill Ward is on the way. Note "riding" shoes. Circa 1965.
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Most will agree the later work Gene Bilbrew did for Satan Press (likely done while he was slipping into heroin addition, or at least "chipping") had lost what elegance and clarity of line it once had. The Satan Press books, of which there were a dozen or so, are fairly hard to find today. They are certainly striking still. For more complete biographical material on Bilbrew, see earlier posts.
The first flip book (and I guess, the first example of interactive media) was patented in 1882. This one, an original circa 1930 or so, was one of a series of adult novelty books sold under the counter. An 8 second clip.
The Sombrero Kid (one of a series of four Animated Flippin' Flappers) circa 1930.
Collection Jim Linderman
One of the most extraordinary artists of the "vintage sleaze" era is a recent discovery. These HAND-PAINTED ORIGINAL PHOTOGRAPHS were taken in the early 1950s by Rudolph Rossi, a previously unknown amateur photographer who photographed no less than famed model Bettie Page (second photo above) and her friends at outdoor and indoor posing sessions arranged by Cass Carr. The camera clubs were unique in that they not only allowed picture takers access to nude women, but the models were an interracial group, both practices unheard of in the times before civil rights. In fact, one of their outdoor meetings was raided by police and has become part of Bettie Page lore. An unusual discovery, approximately 200 works, mostly 8 x 10 or larger, turned up near New York city a few years ago. The majority were purchased by one collector who is showing them at the site CAMERA CLUB GIRLS. More information is found there. A rare and stunning look into the secretive amateur photography of an earlier time! Also unusual is that the artist painstakingly took the time to hand tint each photo, thus creating the illusion of color photography.
The vivid, bright work of Peter Driben still brings an astounding amount of color into the often dingy world of drawn damsels. Driben was married to actress Louise Kirby, and produced hundreds upon hundreds of paintings for short-title and short lived girly mags of the 1940s such as Eyeful, Wink, Whisper, Pep, Snappy, Flirt and Titter (of which those above are nice bright examples.) He was quite well-known by virtue of his astounding prolific nature...and as such this is an easy post. He died in 1975. I think he dreamed in color.
Three works by Dean Henry, American artist who created over 400 of these delicate and erotic paintings in secret, they were found after his death (at age 95) hidden in his summer home by family members. Circa 1975 Collection Victor Minx
Of course playing off the Kinsey Report, this cover by fallen penman Gene Bilbrew has to be one of the sleaziest sleaze covers ever. More Bilbrew paperback illustrations follow below, but they can hardly get any lower. Good idea for a book though...a local sex survey.
1930 Original photograph of a hand-painted banner for a sideshow or carnival "midnight ramble" which was a strip show operated for gentleman attending the fair. Often, local police were paid off to allow the shows, and performers revealed considerably more than typical convention allowed. The artist who painted this paid more attention than usual to the lines, curves and details.
La Crosse, Wisconsin circa 1930 Collection Victor Minx
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Sometimes even I am surprised. Certainly one of the most extraordinary commissioned paintings in history, the artist was Lawrence Stern Stevens, one of the more highly regarded pulp artists of the 1940-1950 era. Imagine getting the call for THIS work. Stevens, who had a life as unusual as this painting, did covers for Argosy, Super Science Stories, Famous Fantastic Mysteries, Amazing Stories and such, often under a pseudonym as his father, a respected preacher, had the same name. I don't think he showed this one to dad. His original paintings have sold for more than $10,000 at auction, and there is considerable information to be found on the web.
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An extraordinary piece of film. Candy Barr was far more than a stripper, she was an improvisational dancer the equal to any jazz musician of the fifties. Friend of Jack Ruby and other Mobsters, her life wasn't pretty, but she sure could move. Ignore buffoons at the start of film, and pick up the book. Quite a story and quite a treat.