Erotic Photography Nostalgia

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Erotic Photography Nostalgia

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Mar 20, 2012, 3:15pm

Well, so I added Sappho: the Art of Loving Women and a couple of David Hamilton books to my bookshelf, and it got me thinking. I really love the 70's erotic photography style. The soft light (Vaseline on the lens occasionally notwithstanding), the clothes, the makeup, the restraint (I'm not talking about Hustler here).
Later stuff just has a harder edge to it that doesn't appeal to me. Maybe it's because I came of age in the 70's. I rather like some of the silliness, and the overall artistic look of the 50's photos too.
What do you think? Do you have a preference for a certain time/style?

Mar 23, 2012, 2:10am

The 50s pictures are so lovely inocent, Human smiles, unshaved natural looks. Even the hard core pictures are inocent and with a tint of shyness. The CCC then made us al drown in straight forward work. Today there are different lines of thinking and choises. Very artistic projects get mixed with the ultra raw stuff. Back to the 50s please!

Mar 23, 2012, 2:06pm

Very much agree with groovykinda on this. I still love the imagery of the Paul Raymond magazines of the seventies. The shoots were staged in an almost cinematic manner: detailed, luxurious interiors and thoughtful (often natural) lighting, with models very much in character.

I think the 'hard' texture of modern erotica at the lowest common denominator is down to pure laziness: everything is floodlit just because it makes setting up a picture simpler, and as for staging and character - why bother?

Mar 23, 2012, 3:26pm

I think there's more to it than that. Somewhere along the line the romanticism was replaced by a more hard-edged "realistic" look. Maybe it was economics (Hustler forcing Penthouse to become more explicit; Penthouse forcing Playboy, etc.), or maybe it was just a general changing of tastes.

There's a big rockabilly/bombshell/retro movement going around, but even that doesn't seem to have the fun or the romance of days past.

If you ever get a chance to see "The Notorious Bettie Page," it's wonderful in the way it mimics the photographic style of the pinups.