Saturday, April 15, 2017

Get Thee to a Bunnery

So I recently covered Bianca Balti’s nipples when I noticed that nothing else was.

She actually did Playboy a couple of years ago, in July/August of 2014.
She went and bared it all. And she looked great doing it.

It sent me down a rabbit hole. A lot of my favorite 80s/90s models have disrobed for Playboy. I have a handful of these issues, buried in a closet somewhere.

Shall we explore their history?

To be honest, I’m not sure if I’m supposed to show nipples on this blog or not, but if it helps I hereby declare all these images Artistically Important. You wouldn’t make me censor Botticelli’s Venus, would you?
The original Angie Everhart.
One fun game to play: Read all the little headlines on the each cover. It’s a fun cross-section of what was on the National Mind each of these years.

Going all the way back to November of 1984, we have Christie Brinkley. Who could have guessed at the time she’d still be flaunting what she’s got 33 years later?
As it happens, she does NOT reveal much skin in this magazine. She’s modeling men’s clothing, in fact, so she’s considerably less naked than she gets in Sports Illustrated.
But she must be counted.

• • •

Next up is Cindy Crawford. She did two shoots, ten years apart. First in July, 1988:
Herb Ritts, one of our finest photographers of beautiful women (you’ll hear his name again and again in this post), captures some breathtaking and moody black-and-white photos of Cindy at her peak.

In October, 1998, Both Cindy and Ritts returned.
This time the photos are just as moody, but there are a few more splashes of color.

• • •

Stephanie Seymour also had two appearances, two years apart, with two parallel cover headlines:

Her 1991 shoot is brought to us by, once again, Herb Ritts.
And it’s gorgeous.

Her 1993 shoot:
…went a little further in what it revealed.
I thought I’d take a cue from SI’s logo placement…

• • •

Hey, guess who photographed Elle Macpherson for the May 1994 issue?
Yes, Herb Ritts. Some guys have all the luck.
I got my hands on a copy of this a few years after it was published. I remember being disappointed. Look at how angular her poses are! Look at how severe and slicked-back her hair is! Where are the feminine curves and voluptuous brown locks I love so much?
I’ve since come to admire the photos. They’re not supposed to be your standard (swimsuit) issue cheesecake. I now think they’re quite beautiful on their own terms.

• • •

Naomi Campbell in December of 1999…
…is the trippiest and most bizarre of the selections. Which makes sense when you realize the photographer is David LaChapelle, whose style is super colorful and arresting.

At first, you think, “Is the theme ‘food’? There’s a lot of food in these photos…”
But then you turn around and she’s being mounted by a leopard.
And then this pic, which MAYBE has a hint of bondage going on?
Nah, that’s just my filthy mind. Naomi would never deliberately suggest—
Well. Different magazine.

• • •

In February, 2000, Angie Everhart broke a promise to her grandmother when she posed nude.
I actually remember reading about that promise and being surprised when I heard she was going for it after all.
She was photographed by Macro Glaviano, who’s no slouch when it comes to capturing women. I have his book Sirens, which is full of joy.
If you thought I was joking with my Botticelli reference above, check out how impossibly long her hair is in these.

By the way, here’s a little article/video about Angie’s shoot. She mentions that she deliberately hid her pubic hair, even though, in her words, “they wanted to see if the drapes matched the curtains.” That’s not QUITE the expression she’s looking for, but we all know what she means.
“I think men are always gonna want to see women in bathing suits. And I think they should!”
— Angie

“I agree 100%.”
— Swimsuitologist

And you DO glimpse a tiny tuft of her carpet in one or two of the photos.

• • •

Rachel Hunter: April, 2004.
If Naomi above implied a bit of bondage, Rachel just went all out. My eyes almost fell out of my head when I first saw these.
There are a couple shots that DON’T go there, but for some reason I have a hard time concentrating on them.

• • •

Later in 2004, in August to be exact, we received Eva Herzigova
Out of all the photos in this lineup, hers seem to be the most straightforward. Beautiful woman. Standing before you. Naked and lovely.

There’s a certain pose that seems to come up time and time again. I call it the “supine coffee table.” Here we see it demonstrated by Eva, Angie, and Cindy.

So there you have it. I’m on the record as preferring swimsuit-clad girls to naked girls, but I’m certainly not going to scold them for removing their swimsuits.

I have a few more bikini-less bikini models up my sleeve. They’re more recent. I think I’ll post them pretty soon.

(By the way, here's where those cover-bunnies are hidden, in order of appearance: lace backdrop beyond right breast, medal, shadow on neck, sarong near upper-right inner thigh, shadow behind hair, tassels on left thigh, hair swirls on left shoulder, inner lining of cape, hair strands above left collarbone, fringe on left breast, pendant.)