Pinup Models and Pinup Modeling Tips

Pinup Models and Pinup Modeling

A pin-up model specializes in provocative poses, however, pin-up photography is not pornography. It features fully-clothed women in playful and suggestive stances. Traditional pin-up art never shows nudity and prefers to leave a lot to the imagination. The women in these photos, often times smiling and friendly-looking, suggesting the “girl-next-door” look, in contrast to the more overtly sexual expression in porn. Pin-up girls are also known as “Cheesecakes.”

History of Pinup Modeling

Pin-up models became popular during the end of the nineteenth century. It was the end of the Victorian age, where women and sexuality were severely repressed. During the twentieth century, especially during the swinging 1920s, western culture began to rebel against Victorian repression and started celebrating sensuality. The first pin-up models were painted or illustrated. During the 1930s and 1940s, photographers started capturing pin-up models on film. These images converted into calendars and posters and were marketed to the masses. Posters were particularly popular with soldiers during war time, who took these posters and calendars with them overseas. The most popular pin up models were Betty Grable, Marilyn Monroe and Joan Crawford, to name a few.


In modern times, pin-up models are used in photography. Before photography was a popular medium, pin-up models were often the muse in illustrations. Even after the advent of photography, pin-up models were employed to model for paintings, drawings or other art work. Many people think Betty Boop, a very popular cartoon in the 1930s, was a caricature of various pin-up models during that time.


The most successful pin-up model is one who can balance sexual innuendo with a deliberate innocence. Modern pin-up models are often stylized in a retro-1950s appearance. Hair is polished and reminiscent of the pin curl, or wave look. Makeup is bright, especially featuring red lips and defined eyes with heavy mascara. Clothing is also retro-inspired, in keeping with the WWII era, where fashion dictated tight bodices, pantyhose and high heels.


Pin-up is not porn. It is also not a fetish. Many aspiring pin-up models are confused on the history of pin-up modeling, and believe that anyone dressed up in a retro style is a pin-up model. A true pin-up photograph leaves more to suggestion than it ever reveals.

Any model looking to get into pin-up or any other niche of modeling must be at least 18-years-old. It is necessary, for the liability of the photographer and the company that purchases the photos. Although pin-up models are fully clothed, it is sexually provocative and vulnerable minors should never be in a position of evoking lust.


Models: Jennifer, Sandee Betty  and Heidi from Fresno

Models: Jennifer, Sandee Betty and Heidi from Fresno

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