Monday, February 13, 2012

Mother - Don't Let Your Baby Blow His Future.

Looking at pictures I collected over the past fifty years I came upon several that are a bit of a snapshot into what my life was like in the late 1960's. My hair was long and of course I possessed that youthful look that came with someone of my age and gender. A friend was working at an Robert Block Advertising Agency  and she approached me with a request that I sit for a photo shoot. I wasn't sure at that time why anyone would want to photograph me but it was very flattering that I was asked to be a "model". A time and place was given to me and along with my girlfriend, Chris Young we arrived for my cameo. I was instructed to look into the camera with a forlorn look or a lost look. After a series of shots, here is the one they chose to be used by the upstart tutoring Lovejoy Education Center, Inc. It ran several times in both the Milwaukee Journal and the Milwaukee Sentinel.

 Here is The Advertisement - 1969

Friends and relatives from all over the state of Wisconsin commented on my picture. I was paid for my one and only modeling gig and here is the check stub of my big payday.

The Check Stub to My First Modeling Gig - 1969

During the photo shoot, Chris was asked to join me in several poses. They never did use this photo and I heard from my friend who worked at the advertising agency that they were worried that the general public viewing this photo might perceive that she looked pregnant. She wasn't but it was a nice shot.

Chris Young and Bill Odbert - 1969

I had this wonderful antique barber chair that I restored and covered in crushed maroon colored velvet.
All the metal parts were cleaned and plated with an antique finish. My friend Bert Stitt was also into advertisement and had a customer who needed this prop.

Antique Barber Chair - 1969

One night in 1970 a photo shoot was set up and I was placed on the barber chair with my leather jacket on, my long hair flowing and this large smoking pipe in my hand. It wasn't until the year 2005 did I realize how this photo was to be used. A local barber named Jose used it in his advertising promotions for 35 years. It wasn't until a chance meeting with him in 2005 that I found out that the now famous Jose Amado Oritz used the photo of me for his business cards. When I found out I was thrilled, honored and to tell the truth a little light headed. I never once saw the ubiquitous ads he placed all over the city and when I found out it was like Alice in Wonderland falling down the rabbit hole. My head was spinning. Jose and I have become the best of friends since our second meeting in 2005. Here is his advertisement:

Advertisement and Portrait of Me Used by José - 1969 to 2012

Another friend Les Leffingwell had drawn those cartoons of Will-M-Hell but Les was more then an illustrator, he was an artist. One of his ideas was to do portrait work for people who wanted oil paintings up themselves. Since I had a very visible store front window, he asked if I would sit for a portrait and then display the painting in my Leather Shop window. As payment, he would give me the painting. I'm not sure how much business Les Leffingwell received from that agreement but he did go on to become a successful artist, illustrator and federal court room sketcher. Here's that oil portrait of me:

Oil Painting of Me by Les Leffingwell - 1969

I was never shy about poking some fun at others or myself. Yup, got that right partner!

Me and My Ten Gallon Leather Cowboy Hat with Gloria Beebe - 1971

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