Queen Bettie: Beach Babe

Bettie Page and beaches go together like chocolate and peanut butter. After all, Bettie’s career in modeling began when off-duty NYPD officer and avid photographer Jerry Tibbs approached her on the shores of Coney Island, New York, told her she’d be a great pinup model, and gave her his card. Soon after he was taking photos of Bettie at his studio, even helping make her first pinup portfolio, supposedly free of charge. Tibbs’ faith in Bettie as a model and his kindness helped kickstart the career of the world’s most famous pinup girl, and for that we all owe him a hearty “Thank you!”

So, as another summer season comes to a close, here’s Beach Babe Bettie at various photo shoots and on different shores from throughout her illustrious career. In some, she’s sultry and seductive. In others, she’s playful or relaxing seaside, not a care in the world, just being the hottest pinup girl of all time. No big deal.

Bettie’s fruitful partnership with model and photographer Bunny Yeager produced some of the most stunning shots of Bettie’s pinup career, including all of the photos I’m using in this post. Yeager was the preeminent pinup photographer of her time and she and Bettie were utterly in sync artistically. The results of their collaborations are pure art pieces. The “Jungle Bettie” photos Yeager took in Florida are absurdly popular, and for good reason: Bettie looks sexy, powerful, and fierce, like an indomitable superhero. So many of these Bettie posts will feature Yeager’s photographs, because the two glamour models made exquisite magic together.

Topless Bettie applying sun tan lotion. Yeager once noted that Bettie was the only model she worked with who never had tan lines.

This last one is a personal favorite of mine. Yeager was unparalleled at illuminating Bettie’s innate strength and confidence, but here she masterfully captures the sex symbol’s contemplative, vulnerable side. The photo is astonishing in its candor, as if opening a window into Bettie’s soul. Truly stunning.

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