Wednesday, December 2, 2009

She didn't make the cut

Our fetching lass is known as a comp, or comprehensive sketch, in this case for a Film Fun cover that was never to be. The painting was sold at a Heritage Auction a few months back and would I ever wish I could brag that she was hanging out in my study. But alas, she exists only in my memory, or more accurately my hard drive's memory. I am lucky enough to own a comp of another Film Fun cover completed in 1941, and my guess is that this painting was done around the same time. It's curious to me that Bolles would still have been making such detailed studies, having 20 years and nearly 200 Film Fun under his belt. More so that the logo was painted in so carefully. By the way, I am pretty convinced that Bolles himself designed this logo for Film Fun, which first appeared in January of 1926 (he was a master letterer and designed other well known logos for commercial products including one long used for Bond Bread). But I have found one photo of a final Film Fun painting with the logo painted directly on it so perhaps this wasn't so unusual.
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So why didn't our Bolles girl make the cut? I think the image is lovely and I like her hairdo, which seems to be more in the vein of Rita Hayworth than the tightly coiffed Betty Grable style he often relied on. While Bolles posed a lot of his girls in beach scenes, this image doesn't match up with any of them and I think the only cover that comes even remotely close is this stunning image from 1940. By the way the original painting for this issue was offered for sale on eBay about seven years ago and if one of you happens to own it I would love to include a photo of it for my book project.

Let's just hope there are more examples like our fair beach maiden out there yet to be discovered.

5 comments:

Artman2112 said...

man that's a beauty!!

Pop9 said...

Yeahhh.

Proof said...

Thanks for this wonderful information on this work! I have long pondered this particular image as to if it ever make it to publication as a Film Fun Cover... Personally, I am glad it is only a pre-work, as it appears rough, but I have always found this particular image to be quite beautiful!

Jack R said...

I agree on all counts. For a lot of illustrators the preliminary work ends up being fresher and more imaginative than the final product. I guess art Ed's feel like it's their obligation to fiddle.

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