The perception once was, and remains to some degree, that naturists play(ed) with beach balls. I’ve never actually seen a real life naturist with such an item, but I’ve seen photos from various eras that reinforce this myth.
Of course, it wasn’t always the case that the beach ball was a naturist ‘must have’ item, rather that it could provide a suitable prop to hide certain aspects of the body -genitalia particularly.
Breasts were ‘ok’ as this cover from Health & Efficiency magazine, a title that introduced several generations to the concept of naked people in mixed company. It’s something of a British institution, or was until the internet came along.
It was necessary to be deliberately coy with imagery, with the front cover from 1958, above, demonstrating that no nudity was possible. It may be that the seemingly ‘retrograde’ step over the course of the 1950s had much to do with H&E maybe making the leap from under the newsagent’s counter to being on ‘the top shelf‘ of his magazine racks.
Harry has been out with model Abbey, and captured her utilising a beach ball for ‘prop’ purposes (priced at L$50 on the Marketplace).
Using the same prop set, and a bit of Photoshop work, he has also recreated a late 1950s front cover from Health & Efficiency.
The magazine now has an online presence, but the content can’t be read without a subscription.
Note, given the context in which I’m writing this blog entry, that the magazine is also selling a ‘nostalgia’ type calendar for 2017 in which images, such as those we’ve used above, and tried to replicate, are reproduced.