The Graduate

A commencement-photo shooting has opened whole new vistas for springtime 

Gaye Rennie (b. 9/21/49; 5’6″, 118lb.) was featured in the April 1968 issue.  It was a high school graduation portrait rather than a wedding-party picture that brought Gaye into the Figges’ studio in Glendale.

The choice of photographers was obvious, since Mel Figge and Gaye’s mother, actress Ann Gavel, had been friends for years.  Gaye said she had no interest in acting, despite the fact that Bill Figge saw in her a Jean Harlow quality.

When Gaye Rennie appeared at the Glendale, California, studios of photographer Bill Figge less than a year ago to sit for her high school graduation pictures, Bill decided to offer her the chance to become a Playmate. “The moment I looked at her,” frequent gatefold-girl finder Bill told us, “I felt a quality that I was able to define only later. It’s the Thirties’ film-star quality Jean Harlow epitomized — an ultimately stylish, glamorous essence. It’s a matter of face and hair and figure, of course, but also something in the smile and the voice — and Gaye has it.”

Soft-spoken Miss Rennie smiles at Bill’s reaction while disclaiming any ambitions to make that quality more real by working for a film or stage career. “What I do want,” says Gaye, “is to follow up my Playmate appearance with more modeling. I feel wonderfully at ease in front of a camera and have had an interest in fashion for as long as I can remember.”

Waiting for the break into fashion modeling that she hopes her centerfold stint will bring, Gaye has been employed since graduation last June as a receptionist at Marilynne’s City of Styles, a Glendale beauty salon. “The job is a great way to keep myself solvent and yet have time to do what I want,” says our lady in waiting, for whom doing what she wants means reading, painting and leading an active social life.

“I’m pretty much a fun-and-games person on dates, whether it’s slot-car racing in the evening or an exhausting afternoon of tennis. The quietest moments I leave myself are those when I go off to sketch.” Poised on the threshold of her career but still free enough to enjoy social evenings and afternoons alone with her pastime, Gaye Rennie makes a thoroughly model Playmate.

When photographer Bill Figge first encountered Gaye posing for her high school graduation pictures, she had already decided to be a model.  Since then, the Glendale beauty has attended modeling school and now works regularly as a mannequin.

She has also attracted movie-makers’ attention: Miss Rennie was offered leading roles in two upcoming films but turned them down.  “I’m not interested in being an actress,” she says.  “That strikes a lot of people as odd, but modeling gives me all the pleasure I want from a career.”

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