The June issue of Bombshell magazine is out! My Hearst Castle-inspired set by Marilee Caruso (who also did the makeup and hair) is in Book 1, including the inside cover facing the table of contents. If you want to grab this – or any – Magcloud publication on sale, there’s a discount code right now: MAG25.
Since I am a huge fan of William Randolph Hearst’s La Cuesta Encantata estate (“the enchanted hill,” now a California State Park located near San Simeon, CA), I wanted to incorporate a sliver of the atmosphere there. Virtually all aspects of the architecture and decoration were overseen by architect and Berkeley grad (Go Bears!) Julia Morgan over nearly three decades, and it remains one of her most impressive projects.
Since we couldn’t shoot at the actual house, we adapted Marilee’s “study” setup to double as W.R.’s library. The original room is very Spanish Baroque in ways that only a wealthy media mogul who collected lots of European antiques can replicate, but we did our best. I added a reproduction Greek vase (dude collected tons of art, including a huge ancient pottery collection from Greek antiquity which he highlighted in his library) and my “Citizen Kane” snowglobe to the studio set.
Marilee put images from my Film Noir shoot on the late 1940s tv console to add another layer of meaning, as both Hearst and Marion Davies (his girlfriend and major silent era and golden age of Hollywood star) were involved in the early American film industry. Given the tv cabinet and the more mid-century look of the studio set, we couldn’t do 1920s or 30s. And since the house was closed during World War II and Mr. Hearst and Davies left the house in 1947 due to the former’s ill health, we figured a small evening party in 1946 or 1947 “coulda happened” like this.
You can find this and all my issues via my Linktree.
Marilee Caruso did the pretty hair and makeup and took the photos for our six-page feature. I didn’t think I’d be able to pull off an early-1970s look, but Marilee made it work and I ended up loving the results. She also shot Missy Maybe’s lovely cover set for the same issue!
You can grab a copy of the magazine or a cover poster via Magcloud, and use code BF25 to get a discount (on these or any Magcloud publication) through 11/28/2022 (the actual discount varies by publisher and issue, btw). Note that I don’t make any money off of purchases direct from Magcloud, just the Tiki issue and posters (I have one mag copy left and a handful of posters if you want to help feed my pinup addiction. I mean, support me as I pursue this noble hobby! Ha!).
This one’s kinda meta, because my nom-de-pinup is Catherine Morland and I’m actually portraying Jane Austen’s heroine from Northanger Abbey, Catherine Morland, in the photo set. As she’s into gothic romances and horrid novels of all kinds, we have Catherine reading novels by candlelight in a spooky forestscape of her imagination. Eat your heart out, Emily St. Aubert!
Marilee also did the beautiful makeup and hair, which works well with the fashion aesthetic even though we intended it to be fantasy. The dress is by Kay Gnagey of Originals by Kay and is based on an original ensemble in the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s fashion collection. The Chantilly lace shawl is an antique, and the fan is from Amazon with a vintage silk ribbon from Etsy.
Marilee did the fabulous early 1960s makeup and hair (and lent me those awesome vintage earrings!), and I supplied my own clothes and vintage copy of the magazine. The playmate necklace (crystal pave bunny head) is a cheapie I got years ago on Ebay, the velvet dress is the olive green velvet Starlet Wiggle from the Vixen line by Micheline Pitt, and the shoes are my old reliable Christian Louboutin Piou-Piou patent stiletto pumps.
So apparently, Anne Sharp’s presentation copy of Emma recently re-sold for a record-setting £375,000. It’s now the “most expensive” Jane Austen work to date. The new owner is from the U.S., but has decided to loan it indefinitely for display at Chawton House (Jane Austen’s brother Edward’s home in Hampshire, which is now a center dedicated to research on women writers). Jane Austen’s most famous home, Chawton Cottage, is located on the estate and serves as a museum dedicated to the author’s life and works.
More on this sale, Jane Austen’s Emma, and early editions of and reactions to the work: