1940’s Magazine Ads, Part Two

From a Cigarette Ad, 1930's.

From a Cigarette Ad, 1930’s.

This is part two of my exploration of vintage magazine advertisements.

In this detail, above, a yellow “devil figure” pokes an arrow toward a nervous hand.  The whole point of the ad is that smoking will calm you if you’re wound up or agitated.  The beneficial effects of tobacco, liquor and perfume are often proclaimed.

crowAnimals and cartoon characters are sometimes present.  Above, we see the gloomy-looking bird hawking cheap bourbon whiskey.  Below, two cheerful cartoon birds prepare to start a drinking party with a bottle of Schenley’s “Light-bodied whiskies.”  The ad includes the copy: SCHENLEY “SWALLOWS” SING: “A Highball Tastes up to the Minute; When You Put Better Spirits In It.”

schenleytoThen there’s this beer ad, featuring a cat.  Back in the 1940’s, people didn’t seem too concerned that ads featuring cartoons could sell adult products to children.

Purity, Body and Flavor.

Purity, Body and Flavor.

It’s interesting to compare the style and approach of these old ads with the ads of today.  Magazines aren’t the important force that they were 60 or 70 years ago.  Television and computers have changed things a lot.  In the 1930’s and 1940’s radio, the movies and the printed publications held wide interest and influence.  There were less distractions and (some would say) better distractions.

From an ad for Le Jon Brandy.

From an ad for Le Jon Brandy.

Some of the art in these ads is interesting.  The painting style in these last two examples ended up being parodied in MAD magazine by Bill Elder.

From a Whiskey Ad.

From a Whiskey Ad.

I prefer a lot of the old ads to the ones of today.  Partly, they’re just a reflection of their times.  Yet what seemed innocent or normal then, can seem to be a bit odd or twisted today.



2 Responses to “1940’s Magazine Ads, Part Two”

  1. don handy Says:

    Regarding the Ballantine’s Ale ad: there’s no rings on the fingers. Also: who gave them permission to use my name?

  2. artremedy20 Says:

    I too sometimes do things the “Handy Way.”

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