Yesterday, I found an old stash of Holiday magazines from the 50’s in the back of a vintage shop. I wasn’t surprised to see more than a dozen stories on the South and Southerners–the magazine’s expressed purpose was to convey the good life, after all–but I was surprised to see how the stories and pictures managed to capture the best of Dixie society in what was undeniably not her finest or most socially conscious hour. William Faulkner paints a verbal and photographic portrait of his Mississippi in the April 1954 issue and Ovid Williams Pierce shows the diversity of North Carolina’s mountain culture (February, 1957). Not only did James Street’s portrait of Atlanta (January 1951) make me crave a Coke like I haven’t in years, it made me want to restore the South’s signature drink to its full and proper name. He refers to it repeatedly as the South’s vin de pays (freetranslation.com tells me this means “country wine”); the least I can do is drop the slang and call it Coca-Cola.
Tag Archives: Holiday magazine
British artist Ronald Searle is one of the most brilliant illustrators and cartoonists I’ve encountered. Ever. Period. His work is insightful and intelligent and whimsical and lovely, and I can’t get enough of it. In honor of the upcoming holidays, I thought I’d share some of my favorite seasonal Searle images. Most of these are taken from the magazines he worked for over the years—Holiday, Lilliput, Punch, Travel+Leisure, among others—via the very amazing Ronald Searle Tribute Blog, and they represent decades of smart satire and social commentary. There’s nothing Southern or, come to think of it, particularly New York about this post (except that Searle worked for a number of magazines based in NYC), but we all get off message every now and again. Enjoy, and merry times to you all this holiday season.
I found this Ronald Searle illustration, which accompanies a tongue-in-cheek article on Southern mores and manners by North Carolina–born author Frances Gray Patton, in the November 1959 issue of Holiday magazine. All I could think of when I saw it was that if Tim Burton were to redesign Maryln Schwartz’s Southern Belle Primer, this is how it might look.
If you’ve ever read any of Slim Aarons‘ iconic books–Poolside, A Place in the Sun, Once Upon a Time–then you’ve most likely seen an image from or commissioned by Holiday magazine. Though it’s now defunct, it still stands as a testament to the pleasures of the Good Life. In honor of our upcoming holiday weekend (and the vacation I’m leaving for RIGHT NOW), I thought I’d share a few Holiday covers with you.