Women, it turns out, like to look at pictures of women.
That's from Mark Wiseman's list of "Picture Subjects Most Interesting to Women" and based on 20 years of accumulated data culled from readership reports.
"The reason is not that each sex is not interested in pictures of the other," explains Wiseman, "but that the sex of the sole or dominant figure in a picture is a symbolic selector: a signal to the reader that the advertisement is directed to one sex or the other."
Some other picture subjects most interesting to (1950's) women: "children, babies, domestic situations, apparel and interior scenes..."
"... jewelry and other personal accessories..."
"... realistic foods..."
"Don't use sports scenes unless the chief figure is a woman," advises Wiseman.
"The automobile is strictly a man-symbol," says Wiseman, "and usually induces few women to look."
So how to attract female viewers to a spread of nothing but cars? "Say it with flowers!"
"Women love flowers and decorative accessories."
From "Reader Research and the Art Director's Job" in the March 1952 issues of Art Director and Studio News.