|Flip Wilson by Bill Utterback|
Bill Utterback (1931-2010) worked in the design department at Playboy, and beginning in the mid- sixties, became their unofficial resident in-house caricaturist. He was also considered by many to be the most popular caricaturist living in Chicago. In fact, he was often cited as "The Hirschfeld of the Windy City".
Beginning in the mid-sixties and lasting into the seventies, Utterback contributed black and white silhouette caricatures, somtimes up to eight per issue, that appeared in Playboy's offshoot magazine "VIP, The Playboy Club Magazine":
Playboy published VIP, (Very Important Playboys), as a way of keeping members of the Playboy club informed about all things PLAYBOY In particular, the magazine let members know which entertainers were due to perform at their various Playboy clubs. Many of the portraits would then hang in the clubs.
Click this link for more Utterback comedians created for VIP:
Bill Utterback also created, (full color), caricatures for the popular annual Playboy features "That Was The Year That Was" and for their "Playboy Jazz/Pop Poll"
|Henry Mancini for Playboy|
Bill Utterback (1931-2010) was an American illustrator most widely known for his contributions to Playboy and The Second City‘s theatre in Chicago.
Utterback was born on January 5, 1931 in Arlington Heights, Illinois. Utterback attended the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts in the 1940s, and then The Art Center in Pasadena where he was influenced by teacher Joseph Henninger.
At the invitation of a friend, Utterback joined the design department of Playboy in the mid-sixties. Utterback was asked to illustrate some caricatures for publication after an art director saw a birthday card Utterback had created for a fellow employee. This led to Bill’s regular feature in “That Was the Year That Was”  each April issue. After leaving Playboy, Utterback worked as a freelance illustrator from his home studio in Lisle, Illinois, servicing clients including The Second City until his death in 2010, and painted official portraits of Illinois Senator Pate Phillips which hung in the Illinois State Capitol building.
In later life, Utterback taught workshops at the DuPage Art League in Wheaton, Illinois, and sculpted a portrait likeness of Pate Phillips which was cast in bronze and unveiled in the DuPage County. Utterback died on February 8, 210 , at 79 years of age.
The caricatures he created for VIP magazine have rarely been seen, outside of subscribers to VIP,(which no longer exists), and to member's of the Playboy clubs. So, if these fabulous drawings are new to you, enjoy!
a 1966 album cover by Utterback
Some samples of Utterback's annual All-Star Bands from Playboy:
|The 1967 Playboy All-Star Jazz band|
Utterback also illustrated Playboy's annual "That was the year that was" by Judith Wax.
Here's a few samples:
The VIP drawings...
|The Everly Brothers|
|Flip Wilson II|
|Sammy Davis, Jr.|
|Sonny & Cher|