Glamour photography is the photographing of model(s) with the intention of producing sexually appealing images.
Standards of glamour photography have changed over time, reflecting changes in social morals. For example,
- in the early 1920s, USA photographers like Ruth Harriet Louise photographed celebrities to glamourise their stature.
- During World War II pin-up pictures of scantily clad movie stars were extremely popular among US servicemen.
However, until the 1950s, the use of glamour photography in advertising or men’s magazines was highly controversial or even illegal. Magazines featuring glamour photography were sometimes marketed as “art magazines” or “health magazines”.Playboy was instrumental in changing the world of glamour photography as the first magazine that focused on nude models and was targeted at the mainstream consumer. In December 1953, Hugh Hefner published the first edition of Playboy with Marilyn Monroe on the cover and nude photos of Monroe on the inside. Marilyn’s star status and charming personality helped to diminish the public outcry. When asked what she had on during the photoshoot, she replied “the radio.”
After Playboy broke through, many magazines followed and this was instrumental in opening the market for the introduction of glamour photography into modern society. Today, softcore nude photographs of models appear in publications such as Perfect 10 or tabloid newspapers such as Britain’s The Sun’s Page 3.
Recently several popular glamour magazines known as lad mags are reversing the trend by emphasizing glamour while showing less nudity, in favor of implied (covered) nudity or toplessness such as the handbra technique. Examples include FHM (For Him Magazine) and Maxim magazines, which launched in 1994 and 1995, respectively.
Art, Porn and the Erotic
‘There have been many attempts to define the differences between artistic, erotic and pornographic approaches to the body, but I doubt their usefulness. There are images of the body that sicken or disgust me - some of which, such as the terrible nakedness of the victims of famine or inhumanity we should perhaps occasionally feel obliged to contemplate, difficult though it sometimes is. Some other pictures simply disgust, but can (and should) generally be avoided. Then there are images that interest me, images that amuse me, those that please me, those that arouse me - most of the best pictures do several of these things - and there are those that leave me cold in every sense.’ Read more
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