Part 17 - Barbara Jean (BJ)
I'll start this page with some obscure history before I continue with the art.
In the early 1960's there was a falling out in the California TV community. Virginia Prince, the founder of Chevalier publications, and one of his employees began battling over ownership of Transvestia magazine, its other publications and its mailing list. People who were formerly friends began taking opposing sides.
Here is a letter written by Charles (aka Virginia Prince) to BJ.
To you too I say I regret that things ever came to the state that it becomes necessary to write this letter. However, in every group there appear to be some who cannot let well enough alone and who choose to make trouble. You chose to associate yourself with these. I will say that I believe that your actions were not malicious, but they were very and advised and unwise. In any case, they became part of the web of events which now threatens a great many persons.
You are aware that Bobby Hamilton has brought suit against me claiming half interest in Chevalier publications. Naturally, I must defend myself in all possible ways. He also wants possession of the subscriber's list and this too I must defend. Defense consists not only of documents etc., but of testimony by those who have information which bears on the matter. This can be obtained by voluntarily offering such information or by means of the deposition and subpoenas. Since you have associated yourself with what must be loosely termed "the opposition". I can hardly expect to come forward voluntarily to help me. Therefore, this letter is a rather more really a way of informing you that you will shortly be served with an official notice to appear or deposition and this advance notice will give you time to collect information about dates etc. as will be necessary. Attorneys can and do ask all kinds of things during deposition. It would curl your hair to know the embarrassing and untrue things they asked Joyce during her deposition. I've no way of knowing what the attorney will want to know in detail, and there are some matters that will be beneficial for them to know. You're one of the original members of Hose and Heels and were present at the first meeting at that little place on No. Wilton. You have known me all this time. You were also the artist who illustrated "Fated for Femininity", a publication of Chevalier publications. It required your dealing with the managing personnel of the publication. Consequently, your information as to this was, what you did for Chevalier, how much and what you were paid for it will help to establish the relationship.
As I said, I regret having to involve you is this, but when something as irresponsible as the suit to Bob is bringing gets started it is impossible to prevent the involvement of lots of people who would greatly prefer to be left out of it. If he had realized this perhaps he wouldn't have started in the beginning. So I'm sorry, but as long as the attack persists that defense must be at work defending.
BJ was never called to testify and the suit disappeared in time but you can imagine the consternation that receiving such a letter in the trasgenderly repressive days of the early 1960's caused BJ and the others who received similar letters.
Now on with the art.
These first drawings are Barbara Jean's modifications of art by Curtus. The art on the left is by Curtus and on the right (or bottom in the case of the last two drawings) is by BJ.
The next two drawings are a bit special. Tasha drew the first as a homage to BJ and said the following:
"There is a classic artist from the 1950's named Barbara Jean who did a lot of drawings of sissy boys. Barbara Jean had a great sense of fashion and poured a tremendous amount of detail into her ensembles. While I find her drawing style charming in its naïveté, I always wondered how BJ's sissy styles would look on my boyz."
Tasha had no idea that BJ was still alive and was delighted when I contacted her with BJ's response to the tribute.
BJ colored a black and white cover by Vicky for me:
To sum things up - If BJ is going to put a boy in a dress, you can bet that it will be covered with lace and bows:
I have 19 sets of Barbara Jean drawings available for sale.
The first two sets are modified drawings from Nan Gilbert stories such as this from 'Adventures in Petticoats'.
The next two sets are unpublished groups of drawings done in response to story ideas from Nan Gilbert such as this drawing of the Grace School inducting a new student.
The next thirteen sets each have about 40 BJ drawings most of which I scanned from the unpublished originals in my collection. Here are a few samples (the ones I sell are much larger).
The final two sets are my personal favorites. They all show boys at the Sissy Salon, a special store that caters to boy-girls. The boys don't seem to enjoy the opportunity to try on the finest of feminine frills.