Boris Vallejo (born January 8th, 1941) is a Peruvian-born American artist.
Alone or in conjunction with his wife, Julie Bell, Vallejo has provided dozens of covers for fantasy/sf paperbacks, and posters for films such as Barbarella, National Lampoon's Vacation, and the ''Aqua Teen Hunger Force'' movie.
You've probably seen at least one of Vallejo's works, which often feature muscular men and attractive women in states of near-total undress, and no background. His characteristic imagery has been highly influential within the fantasy genre, particularly with the covers he painted for Conan the Barbarian and other such works.
Vallejo's work is often confused with that of Frank Frazetta, as the two artists have/had similar styles, and both worked on Conan and a couple of other projects.
Most links on this page lead to images that are at least slightly NSFW (some more than others) so beware.
Vallejo's art provides examples of:
- Action Girl: Despite some Stripperiffic costuming and perilous situations, few of Vallejo's heroines are depicted as distressed damsels. Indeed, he's spoken about preferring to paint women warriors over any other sort of hero.
- Amazonian Beauty/Statuesque Stunner: Quite a few of the females in his art are tall, muscular, and of course, wearing next to nothing at all, many done from sketches of models whom he and Bell, a former bodybuilder, knew from gyms. He's even made a few paintings using Bell as a model.
- Boobs-and-Butt Pose: Shows up in his work so often, one example is the current Trope Image.
- Fantasy Kitchen Sink: Wizards, robots, aliens, demons, monsters, princesses, vampires, weird worlds and dimensions, and countless combinations of all of them are seen in his art. If its fantasy-related, he's probably drawn it. (Bell's work is much the same.)
- Fluffy Tamer: It's rare to see a beautiful, scantily clad princess being menaced by some hideous monster in his works, but very common to see one commanding such beasts.
- Genre-Busting: He tends to combine fantasy and science fiction into his work in very odd ways. A scantily clad sorceress riding a desert on a unicorn with an android following her... Suffice to say, it's odd. And awesome.
- It's Not Porn, It's Art: In the serious sense. Many of his works display incredible artistry on numerous fronts... they just happen to be of nearly nude amazons riding dinosaurs and shirtless muscular men punching dragons.
- Leg Cling: He popularized the pose with scenes like this one.
- Meta Casting: Bell has posed for a few of his paintings, like this one here, and Bell's sister Suzanne was the model for this one.◊ His daughter Maya was the model for the young girl in this 1979 painting.
- Nubile Savage: Lots of his female characters are like this, along with many of the men.
- Our Mermaids Are Different:
- To quote him directly, "Most of my models want to be mermaids. I have to say I prefer mermaids without the fish tails. The Nyads are creatures of Greek mythology, and fish tails are never mentioned in any of the descriptions I've seen." One example seen here.
- Not that he hasn't done a few paintings of traditional mermaids, like this one◊. (This was actually for a British deodorant advertisement in 2004.)
- Rated M for Manly: Hyper-muscular men fighting fantasy monsters while half-naked women cling to their legs. Oh yeah! To be fair, there are even more paintings where the women are depicted as far from helpless.
- Sensual Spandex: A lot of his works feature near-naked men and women, and for the ones where they are covered up, like the works he did for Marvel, expect them to be wearing impossible form-fitting clothes that show up every curve and muscle of their bodies.
- Shameless Fanservice Girl/Guy: Pretty much all of the women in his works. And most of the men, too. In fact, let's just call it most of the entities with humanoid features.
- Scenery Porn: He tends to put more attention on humans, but a few backgrounds are very well-done, especially in his works for calendars.
- Strange Minds Think Alike: Vallejo had no idea how similar this work in 1979 was to a scene in The Cell until he saw the movie years later.
- Stripperiffic: A lot of his work features men and woman engaging in combat wearing next-to-nothing for protection. A lot of the female warriors wear a thong and chainmail bikini; the men, meanwhile, have no need for such prudishness and are typically content with boots and a loincloth.
- Thong of Shielding: A lot of his paintings seem to draw attention to the woman's bottom, the scene done with her back to the viewer; he has said in commentary that the lower body is the part he enjoys painting the most.