Artist, Deceased Person
1893 – 1984
Who was Earl Moran?
Earl Steffa Moran, born in Belle Plaine, Iowa, was a 20th Century pin-up and glamour artist. Moran's first instruction in art came under the direction of John Stich, an elderly German artist who also taught the great illustrator W.H.D. Koerner. Moran also studied with Walter Biggs at the Chicago Art Institute.
Moran later studied at the famed Art Students League in Manhattan, where he took instruction from the muralists Vincent Drumond, Robert Henri, Thomas Fogarty, and the legendary anatomist George Bridgman. After moving back to Chicago in 1931 and opening a small studio where he specialized in photography and illustration, he sent some paintings of bikini-clad girls to two calendar companies; when both Brown and Bigelow and Thomas D. Murphy Company bought the work, his career was officially launched.
Moran signed an exclusive contract with Brown and Bigelow in 1932 and by 1937, his pinups had sold millions of calendars for the company. In 1940, Life ran a feature article entitled "Speaking of Pictures" which mostly focused on Moran's work and made him a national celebrity. In 1941, Moran helped the magazine publisher, Robert Harrison, to launch a new men's magazine called Beauty Parade, and he later contributed pin-ups to other Harrison magazines such as Flirt, Wink and Giggles.
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