Thursday, February 16, 2012

Two girls by Olivia de Berardinis



Here is a rare girl/girl illustration by American pin-up queen Olivia de Berardinis.  This is a work from right at the beginning of her career, from 1975, before she developed the distinctive "Olivia" style. 

Studying at the New York School of Visual Arts she was working as a waitress and wondering how to make money from her art.  From a very young age she had always enjoyed drawing women and so wondered if any of the mens' magazines might be interested in her pictures.   What started as a way to make extra cash in the mid-seventies soon became her career.  Her work was spotted by Hugh Hefner who was planning to feature a pictorial of Playmate of the Year Lilian Mueller dressed in the style of some of Olivia's pin up paintings. Since 2004 she has been a regular contributor to Playboy; her monthly pin-ups making her a successor to one of her inspirations, Alberto Vargas.

This painting appeared in Club International, in its November 1975 issue, illustrating an amusing story about two Swedish models on a Greek Island, which seems as good a subject as any for a fantasy...

6 comments:

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    1. Thought you might! it's the beads! It's the beads!

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  2. Thank you. I'm not fan of her work but this one is cool :-)

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  3. Great blogs, wondered if I could get you to write a story for a magazine am putting together my email matthew@studio-baron.com

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  4. Looks to me that at this stage of her work she was channelling Christos Achilleos as opposed to Vargas. I do love her Playboy stuff - especially the Betty Page portraits!

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    1. I agree that the style is similar to Achilleos non-airbrush work but his work for sister magazine Men Only post dated this picture so more likely he was being influenced by her!

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