Vintage visual inspiration





Constantin Alajalov

Constantin Alajalov

Russian-American illustrator Constantin Alajalov (1900-1987) created over 70 covers in his iconic style for this Conde-Nast publication and also contributed cover art for The Saturday Evening Post, New Yorker and Fortune.
He also illustrated many books, including the first edition of George Gershwin's Song Book. His works are in New York's Museum of Modern Art and the Brooklyn Museum.


Dal Holcomb

Dal Holcomb

Delorma Bostwick Holcomb (Dal Holcomb) was born in Youngstown, Ohio, on February 27, 1901. Dal Holcomb was best known for his magazine cover and advertising art in the 1930s and 1940s. The painting mediums he chose were watercolor and gouache.

His distinctive magazine covers were drawn with a sense of humor. The women were recognizable by their hourglass-shaped figures, rouged cheeks, victory roll or pin curl hairstyles and often-gloved hands.

He was a prolific illustrator creating covers for King Feature Syndicates, including Saturday Home Review and Tab. His illustrations also appeared on, and in, other magazines including; Pictorial Review, Collier's, College Humor, Liberty, and the American Weekly.

His advertising art illustrations were used by companies that included Old Gold cigarettes, General Tire, Etiquet deodorant, Lux dish soap and Continental Can Company.












Doug Sneyd - Playboy Cartoons, 1960s

Doug Sneyd Playboy Cartoon

Doug Sneyd as been a cartoonist for Playboy magazine since 1964. For nearly 20 years, starting in the mid-60's, his "Doug Sneyd" and "Scoops" news cartoons appeared daily in newspapers across North America.

He was a founding member of the Canadian Society of Book Illustrators and has been a member of the National Cartoonists' Society and the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists. Thirty of his full-page color Playboy cartoons are among the 235 Sneyd works included in the National Archives of Canada in Ottawa. Sneyd was born in Guelph, Ontario, Canada, but spent much of his professional career in Toronto. In 1969 he moved his family north to Orillia made famous as the mythical "Mariposa" by humorist Stephen Leacock. He works on the third floor of his home-studio overlooking beautiful Lake Couchiching and spends his winters on the Gulf Coast in Orange Beach, Alabama.



Robert William "Bob" Meyers

Robert William Meyers - Slightly Indiscreet, The Saturday Evening Post story illustration, May 30, 1959
Slightly Indiscreet, The Saturday Evening Post story illustration, May 30, 1959

Robert William Meyers (1919-1970) - painter and illustrator, was born in New York City in 1919. The son of strict parenting, his parents had hopes of another accountant in the family. It must have caused some stir when he turned his direction to his artwork. His art career was focused on the West, thanks to movies he enjoyed as a boy.

His illustrations appeared in the following publications: The Winning Dive, 1950; The Base Stealer, 1951; The Mysterious Caboose, 1950; The Haunted Hut, 1950; Jockie, 1951; True, Argosy, The Saturday Evening Post, and Reader's Digest.





Al Moore

Al Moore pin up girl

Al Moore (19?? - 1991) was a busy illustrator from the 1940s to the late 50s, generating advertising, fashion, story art, and pin up. Covers for Saturday Evening Post and Collier's and interior work for these and Woman's Home Companion, American Magazine, Woman's Day, McCall's, Cosmopolitan. Ads for Hertz, Whitman's Chocolates, Ford, Camay, Nash, US Rubber, Coke, Old Gold, Botany. Replaced Vargas and Petty as Esquire's main pin-up man. Moore's girls are less glossy and impossible than those of his talented predecessors, being more girl-next door realistic and natural. He provided calendars for Esquire, Brown and Bigelow. Last illustrations for Pan Am and US Olympics.


Aubrey Rix

Aubrey Rix

Aubrey Rix was the leading commercial illustrator of the late 1940s and 1950s; his assured economy of line created what was known as a "Rix face".
If he was drawing a woman, she had beautiful eyes with a small nose, and a face of the kind associated with Sophia Loren; if it was a man, he was clearly related, but with a reassuringly square jaw.
Rix's stylish illustrations, page layouts and advertisements, always produced at speed with prodigious energy and enthusiasm, appeared in newspapers, magazines and on hoardings all around the world. (

John Gannam

John Gannam - Balanced Pacific Sheets Ad
Balanced Pacific Sheets Ad

John Gannam (1907-1965) - illustrator, painter and watercolor specialist. He was born in the country of Lebanon. He spent his early years in Chicago, and at the age of fourteen when his father died, he was forced to leave school to work and became the sole source of income for his family.

John Gannam's mastery of the watercolor medium enabled him to add elan to any subject, even a roadside heist by highwaymen. Gannam was a member of the American Watercolor Society, was on the faculty of the Danbury Academy of Arts, and was elected to the Society of Illustrators' Hall of Fame in 1981



Haddon Sundblom

Haddon Sundblom - Santa Claus for Coca-Cola
Haddon Sundblom - Santa Claus for Coca-Cola

Haddon Hubbard "Sunny" Sundblom (June 22, 1899 – March 10, 1976) was a Finnish illustrator and American artist. Sundblom was born in Muskegon, Michigan to a Swedish-speaking family. His father, Karl Wilhelm Sundblom, came from the farm Norrgårds in the village of Sonboda in Föglö of the Swedish-speaking part of Åland Islands, then part of the Russian Grand Duchy of Finland now Finland, and his mother Karin Andersson was from Sweden. Sundblom studied at the American Academy of Art.


Rudy Nappi

Rudy Nappi - She Tried to Be Good, paperback book cover, 1951
She Tried to Be Good, paperback book cover, 1951

Rudy Nappi (1923-2014) was the principal cover artist for the US Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew series in the 1950s through to the late 1970s. His portrayals of the three main characters were regarded as the images most recognizable. In 1968, six out of eight titles were published when MacDonald took over the reigns, and the dust jackets featured Nappi's work.

Rudy Nappi illustrated covers for Nancy Drew Mystery Stories and The Hardy Boys series from 1953 until 1979. He also illustrated
four of The Happy Hollisters covers in the 1970's, and he illustrated "The Grinning Gargoyle Mystery" from The Bobbsey Twins series in 1986.
Previous to illustrating Nancy Drew Mystery Stories, he was an illustrator for pulp fiction magazines.


Norman Rockwell

1958 The Runaway by Norman Rockwell
1958 The Runaway

Norman Perceval Rockwell, The Saturday Evening Post’s most famous illustrator, is considered by many to be the greatest American artist of all time. He was a master storyteller via canvas and paint, and his works, capturing the triumphs and foibles of the common man, are as popular today as they were in decades past. (bio)

Dave Berg

Dave Berg Cartoon

Dave Berg (Brooklyn, June 12, 1920 – May 17, 2002) was an American cartoonist, worked for Timely Comics and later drew Combat Kelley for Marvel. But, of course, his greatest fame came as a contributor to MAD Magazine, where his "The Lighter Side of..." feature was one of the most popular in the magazine's history.

Pepsi Advertisement

Arthur Saron Sarnoff. Pepsi advertisement
Arthur Saron Sarnoff

During the 1950s, Pepsi had three major campaigns: ‘More Bounce to the Ounce’, ‘The Light Refreshment’ and ‘The Sociables’.

The first was carried out from 1950 to 1953. Ever since the 30s Pepsi brand to actively compete with Coca-Cola products, and advertisers have come up with an interesting marketing approach: they decided to sell Pepsi drink for the same price as competitors, but bottles of twice. With campaign More Bounce to the Ounce manufacturers hoping to draw consumers' attention to the profitable ratio of price and quality of the product.

Starting in 1954, Pepsi countered Coke’s Campaign by saying that “its drink is ‘The Modern Light Refreshment’”. This was the first step in a series of marketing strategies that wanted to target youngsters.

The Pepsi magazine ads, “The Light Refreshment’ lasted an entire decade and utilized the talents of some of the top artists in the field. Pepsi’s message was: “that Pepsi was for young, sophisticated, successful, urban Americans; that Pepsi was about the ‘new’ lifestyle – sharing good times, finding romance - not in small town America, but in hip New York apartments and restaurants or trendy Hollywood homes.” (source)


Kurt Ard

Kurt Ard, Illustration for the story ‘Only For Now’ in McCall’s magazine in March 1959

The Danish illustrator and hyper realist Kurt Ard born in 1925 in Copenhagen. Kurt Ard was active/lived in United States. Kurt Ard is known for illustrator, figure, genre.

He became internationally famous for his narrative cover artwork published in popular magazines of the 1950s-1970s, including the Family Journal, the Saturday Evening Post and Reader’s Digest.

Kurt Ard is a good example of the illustrator self-taught, who found his recognition due to ability to reflect the reality photo realistically and with humor. Below you can see example his illustration, other his illustrations you can to find on the Internet.