In the Fifties, girls seemed to just be built, well, differently than they are today. Curvier, for sure. And more than half a century before the interweb, the only way a girl like British pinup Rosina Revelle could really be seen was in a pulp stag magazine. And a fella had to be fairly brash and have been around the block once or twice to go buy one of those from the newsstand.
Out of the hundreds and hundreds of girls who modestly bared it (kinda) all for the racy topless magazines that popped up like damp mushrooms under a hole in the barn roof after World War II, Rosina Revelle got into the business like most of them did: she was discovered after a few beauty contests near her home in Warwickshire, England. Now, the idea of the pinup girl was nothing new, but it was a uniquely American phenomenon that really took hold (and shape) during the second World War. The illustrated girls of Varga, Elvgren and others soon became the blueprint for photographers who found a bursting new market in the magazine business: stag titles, nudist lifestyle magazines and photo club books spanned the gamut between outright naked-girl photos to the sorta-subtle magazines that were supposedly only offering a palette of poses for “fine artists” to work from.
Rosina’s popularity grew quickly, once her photos were first published in Russell Gay’s QT magazine sometime around 1956. From there, she popped up in the magazines of the day for a brief four years or so until, in 1959, her parents allegedly discovered her “second job” and put the kibosh on it. Much to the chagrin of just about every male – and some females – on the planet. She was probably 15 or 16 years old when she started modeling and was done with the career that made her so well known before she was 20.
Not much is known about Rosina, but she’s remained popular not only for her incredible proportions, but also for her shadowy past. Rumors that her mother was a race car driver, her father was some sort of Maltese “shop owner,” speculations of her real name, the year she was born and whether or not she’s still alive are all still swirling around this girl.
But she lives on in the photos she graced us with in those few short years in the late Fifties – Vivian Westwood used her image on one of her t-shirts sold in her London-based SEX store in the Seventies (a specimen still on display in the Victoria and Albert museum to this day) and, well, you’re seeing her here, for chrissakes.
We’re on Rosina’s trail and we hope we’re able to bring you good, if not amazingly interesting, news and a complete story on the girl. For now, DIG IT!