Life magazine

Illustrated by Al Parker

April 1963

  • Chimay Bleue PRO 4y

    Strange that it's from 1963. I would have guessed much older.
  • r8r PRO 4y

    Love that yin-yang composition. I notice bunny and eggs featured in the newspaper there, and another Easter-y flower pattern on the chair...
  • Leif Peng PRO 4y

    Chimay Bleue;

    I think that's Parker (and the ad agency) showing their age. Or maybe we have the wrong impression about what fashions were popular in '63. If you watch Mad Men, this is pretty much the style they're portraying for '63. I'd guess they would have done extensive style research to get the right look for the period. :^)
  • Chimay Bleue PRO 4y

    Thanks, leifpeng. I am a fan of Mad Men (and of that period in history long before the TV series came out, as you can probably tell from my photostream). But to me, at first glance, the style seemed different from that, and to hark back to an earlier period, such as the 1930s or early 40s (although her dress is very 1950s housewife, taking a closer look...). I suspect it's also the brand, which doesn't exactly evoke or embrace the more modernist designs that were popular at the time.

    When I think of early 60s, this is more the style of drawing that comes to mind for me:
    1961-63 Motorola ... city view

    Alas, I know it wasn't all about modernism back then... :-)
  • Leif Peng PRO 4y

    I think you nailed it, Chimay Bleue -- the brand managers may very well have influenced the style details. Based on how old fashioned that Whitman's Sampler package design is, they may have been uncomfortable with anything too modern.
  • mesmerical PRO 4y

    It's interesting, the difference in interpretation. Between the furniture, the wallpaper, their clothing, their hairstyles, and the linework on their faces, this looks quintessentially sixties, to me. In fact I would have placed it much later in the decade, but I'm often tricked by early sixties work.
  • Leif Peng PRO 4y

    My 16 yr old and I were just watching an episode of Mad Men, season 4, yesterday. Its supposed to be 1965, I think, and he was commenting on how '50s things still looked. I guess there was a lot of transitioning going on in the mid-'60s. A lot of "generation gap" too. Today society changes its style instantly - clothes, cars, music - every age group seems to adapt immediately. Back then I think you had less of that. Maybe that's what we're seeing in this ad... hard to pin down exactly what moment in time its portraying...
  • Chimay Bleue PRO 4y

    I agree there's a certain timelessness with the ad.
  • Mike Vosburg PRO 4y

    If anything, when I look at Parker's work it really is a prelude to everything that starts to appear in the 70's. He was well beyond his time as a designer. Although an adept traditional painter, he was the major force in creating the linear style adopted by Bob Peak and many others that defined the ad world of the 60's and 70's.
    Having lived through the Mad Men era what you really have to understand is that one segment of society was still dressing (and living in houses decorated) as though it was the late 30's, there was a chic fashion trend that the hip people wore, and a whole new counter-culture was erupting that would radically change fashion into the boring "casual" look that we all wear today.
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Taken on April 20, 2011
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