Grapefruit Moon Gallery is delighted to offer one of the finest Earl Moran pastels ever available for sale. Titled Now, This is Just Between You And Me, this showcases the young Blue Book Model Agency pin-up model, Norma Jeane Baker, who in just a short few years transformed herself into Hollywood's most famous platinum blonde bombshell Marilyn Monroe. Much has made recently of Moran's early source photographs and pastel calendar illustrations featuring the young Hollywood hopeful, recently resurfaced photographs taken of Monroe showing the model as posed for Moran's Brown & Bigelow Calendar Commissions from the years of 1946 - 1948 have been the subject of recent newspaper articles and tremendous internet buzz. This rare surviving published and iconic original pastel is in pristine condition framed in a gorgeous antique museum quality carved wood frame that only enhances the allure and beauty.
This image first appeared in the 1940s as a mutoscope card with the title Now, This Is Just Between You And Me. It also appeared as the September illustration the 1948 Earl Moran 12-page Calendar Nifty Numbers. The tantalizing quip reads: My reputation's reached afar - I always keep 'em guessing - But the call charge needn't stop us if your call is really pressing.... A complete Nifty Numbers vintage calendar and mutoscope card are included in the sale. Also included with sale is a scarce vintage notebook advertising tablet with the title of Gentlemen Prefer Bonds--an interesting Marilyn Monroe oddity as years later Monroe would star in the 1953 film version of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, which in the late 1940s was running as a Broadway musical starring Carol Channing (based on a 1926 book by Anita Loos).
Below are early images of Marilyn Monroe from her modeling days for The Blue Book Model Agency as posed by Earl Moran for his numerous 1940s brown & Bigelow calendar commissions. Several appear to be reference shots from a sitting for this pastel.