Playboy Retro: Marilyn Monroe - The Early Years

By Playboy.com Staff

Share

<p>See legendary Marilyn Monroe's earliest pictures in Playboy.</p>


Marilyn Monroe’s popularity and influence seem to increase every year. New movies about her life are blockbusters, her look and style are an inspiration to the sexy young ladies of today and her sex appeal still has a hold on the present generation of men.

When the premier starlet of the 2000s, Lindsay Lohan, shot her acclaimed centerfold for Playboy she channeled Marilyn both in dress and the staging of her shoot by recreating the look of the famous Monroe photos that appeared in the very first issue of Playboy.

Even legends have to begin somewhere, and Marilyn Monroe is no exception. She began her career under her birth name of Norma Jeane in the 1940s. She possessed natural beauty and charisma but hadn’t yet developed the blonde bombshell persona which would become a permanent part of pop culture. It’s this early version of Marilyn we’re looking at in Playboy Retro this week.

Earl Moran was a popular Hollywood photographer and painter who specialized in pinup art and glamour photography. When he first met the 19-year-old Norma Jeane Dougherty in 1946, his work had appeared everywhere from movie posters to the pages of Life magazine. Norma Jeane was an up-and-coming model who wished to work with him and they soon hit it off. Over the next four years, Moran would shoot the woman who would become Marilyn Monroe a number of times. His photos of her are at once provocative and effervescent. They’re very much in the girl-next-door aesthetic, and though they don’t show the sultry aura of Marilyn’s later famous work, they do capture her bubbly joie de vivre. We’ve assembled a “best of” retrospective of these sessions so that you can enjoy the beginnings of a career that would change the world.

{“pbembedwidget”:“gallery”,“id”:“15687”,“size”:“large”,“alignment”:“left”}

Experience the beginnings of a megastar in the gallery above and see exactly why this electrifying woman continues to capture the imagination of every decade.


Share

Categories

Playboy Social