We all love a pin-up girl, right? But what do we love even more? A red-haired pin-up girl, of course!
Before we go any further, ‘What is the definition of a pin-up girl?’ I hear you cry!
Well, according to Wikipedia:
‘A pin-up girl, also known as a pin-up model or cheesecake, is a model whose mass-produced pictures see wide appeal as popular culture. Pin-ups are intended for informal display, e.g. meant to be “pinned-up” on a wall. Pin-up girls may be glamour models, fashion models, or actresses.
The term pin-up may also refer to drawings, paintings, and other illustrations done in emulation of these photos. The term was first attested to in English in 1941; however, the practice is documented back at least to the 1890s.’
The term literally comes from the act of ‘pinning-up’ pictures onto walls to look at and admire. Oo-er!
But, just what is it that makes fiery, gingerful locks paired with pin-up poses such an explosive combination?
Perhaps one of the earliest pin-up redheads was Dante Rossetti’s muse, Lizzie Siddal. Lizzie modelled for Rossetti, and one of her most popular images is Millais’ immortalisation of her in his ‘Ophelia’, shown above.
Lizzie possessed a stunning halo of bright copper hair, which was both the source of her modelling success, and ultimately her demise, as whilst posing for ‘Ophelia’ she is said to have contracted pnuemonia, and sadly died shortly after.
Moving on from Lizzie, we have the traditional pin-up images of the 1940’s and 1950’s, popularised by Wink and Titter magazines. Shown above is a fabulous Titter Magazine cover, by Peter Driben.
[Images: Brown & Bigelow]
And of course, these beautiful covers were originally paintings by the popular pin-up artists of the time. The most recognised of these, is Gil Elvgren, who produced some glorious paintings of pin-up girls, and inspires photographers and models worldwide to this day.
Of course these artists also featured beautiful blondes, and bashful brunettes, but to me, the redheads always stood out, looking just that little bit cheekier.
Perhaps this is due to the unpredictable ‘fiery’ connotations associated with hair the shade of sunsets, who knows? Certainly these pin-up artists felt the same way!
Now, we simply cannot talk about red-haired pin-up girls, without mentioning ‘the Goddess of Love’ Rita Hayworth.
She smouldered in ‘Gilda’ and set hearts aflame in ‘Cover Girl’. The pin-up girls of today are most certainly inspired by all of these artists/actresses and magazines of times gone by.
After all, we must look to the past as a way of influencing and bettering what is to come in the future. So, on that note, here is a selection of modern-day flame-tressed pin-up girls for your viewing and inspirational pleasure!
[Images: Left: Autumn Luciano / Right: Sarah Olivier]
Now, all that’s left is for you to find a suitable surface on which to ‘pin-up’ your pin-up girls to! *wink*