From La Vie Parisienne to Alberto Vargas to Irving and Paula Klaw, pictures of pretty ladies have always been in demand. One of today’s best-known photographers in pinup is Susana Andrea of Vestige Photography. Based in San Diego, Susana began taking pinup pictures when she was a high school photography student. Ten years later, Kittens and Kulture: The Pinup Photography of Susana Andrea* is her first book. (It seems there’s going to be a Volume 2.)
I can’t really call myself a modern pinup. I’m hopeless at styling my hair, I use exactly three makeup products (seriously, that’s NOT a joke), and I don’t like having my picture taken. But I adore this book.
The gorgeous models in Kittens and Kulture are all styled to perfection. Their hair is flawless, their makeup is impeccable. I’m green with envy over the clothes.
The things I love most about this book, though, are the beautiful sets. While there are plenty of outdoor shots, the interiors have given me a serious case of retro house envy.
There are other settings – beach scenes (one featuring a beautiful Woody), gardens, pools, roadside shots with stunning vintage cars, unique hotels (I recognized both the Hotel del Coronado and the Shady Dell), and garages. All beautifully done and well worth seeing, but my heart belongs to those vintage interiors.
Fittingly, there are also short essays from models, owners of home tiki bars, and a hot rodder. Perhaps most interesting is Bernie Dexter’s – she began working with Susana when Susana was still in high school!
I’m looking forward to Volume 2. Susana’s passion for her work really shows in her finished photographs.