beauty and glamour from the big screen to the paper doll book
is a specialty of Marilyn Henry’s. Her childhood was filled
with movie-going and playing paper dolls, and if a paper doll
of a favorite star didn't exist, she would draw one for herself.
Getting a good likeness was always a top priority, and that
carries on to her work today. It is one of her strengths as
a portrait artist.
As a girl, Marilyn and her best friend Margie created an elaborate
world for their paper dolls in their own version of Hollywood
called “Twinkletown.” The girls drew glamorous wardrobes
and made up movies for their paper doll stars, and Marilyn would
write about them in her hand-made movie magazine, Screen Fiction.
It was all in fun, but it led Marilyn to a creative future.
After a successful career as a fashion illustrator, writer,
designer, and college art instructor, Marilyn turned her focus
back to her childhood love of paper dolls. Her first published
book was Vivien Leigh, for Merrill Publishing in 1979, and since
then she’s created dozens of movie star paper dolls for
books, magazines and convention souvenirs.
the 1970s Marilyn introduced and discussed old movies on a TV
show, “Superstar Movies,” for her local public TV
station in Evansville, IN. Tapping into her knowledge and love
of old movies, she wrote a book about a favorite star, Alan
Ladd, in The Films of Alan Ladd, published in 1981 by Citadel
Press. And later, she interviewed and wrote about the stars
of daytime TV for various Soap Opera magazines.
During the 1990s she created a lovely line of paper dolls for
B. Shackman & Co. illustrated in the style of the 1940s
books she had loved so well. Her series includes Joan Crawford,
Barbara Stanwyck, Claudette Colbert, Myrna Loy, Lana Turner,
Carmen Miranda, and a paper doll version of Mel Odom’s
Marilyn's celebration of the stars continues today as editor
and art director of Paperdoll
Review, a specialty magazine about the nostalgia of paper
dolls. And now working with Paper Studio Press, she is creating
new paper doll books, capturing the fashions, glamour and beauty
of Hollywood legends including Marilyn Monroe, Ginger Rogers,
Esther Williams, Leslie Caron, Jane Powell, Loretta Young and Joan Fontaine.