A Thousand Words! (Where There’s Smoke There’s Fire)





The roaring twenties is one of my favorite time periods to learn about and study. The nightlife was genuine, everybody was living life with no regrets, and the abundance of jazz music filled the atmosphere. Created by Russell Patterson, this picture shows a young flapper with short brown hair, dressed up, and holding a cigarette. Other artwork from Patterson is a lot more vulgar than this image and not colored so to me this is a more definitive piece of work of all the others. The title, Where There’s Smoke There’s Fire is a perfect description for this masterpiece. Flappers were known for going against the casual role of women by cutting their hair and wearing long dresses that often exposed a little bit of their legs and heels. I think cigarette holders are awesome because they have a fancy elegance to them as shown here. Her red lipstick, long fingernails, and “I don’t care” attitude shows that she is looking for fun, most likely sex otherwise she wouldn’t have her chest and legs exposed while outside at night. Flappers weren’t exactly whores and Patterson communicates this wonderfully by making this woman look appealing and clearly looking for a man. However her face says “I just want to enjoy the nightlife and if I don’t get a man then none are worthy”. Her cigarette smoke is warning people that she is trouble and to stay out of her way and don’t ruin her fun. In all, this picture is one of my favorites because it has simplicity, a great story, and rich American history.

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