Columbia Silhouette Ads

Life Magazine 1914 (PM-2059)


By Doug Boilesen, 2020

Columbia created colorful ads for their 1914-1916 advertising campaign and incorporated silhouettes into the ads by using silhouette figures to look from the outside into the ad's main image. The border of the ad was also often a frame for lettering "Columbia Records" as part of the silhouette. Some black-and-white Columbia ads also used this silhouette style.

Edison had previously used silhouettes in 1906 and 1907 in advertisements featuring black cut-out images on white paper in the classic 'sihouettte' art style.

The following are examples of Columbia Graphophone's 'hybrid' silhouette ads of images and silhouettes.


Columbia Graphophone Company, The Theatre Magazine, 1914


Columbia Records, Life Magazine, 1915 (PM-0880)


Columbia Records, Life Magazine, September 1915 (PM-0878)


"The Columbia Grafonola is the one ideal musical instrument" for every musical occasion, 1915



Columbia Records, Munsey's Magazine, 1915 (PM-0877)


Columbia Records, June 1915


Columbia Records, Country Life in America Magazine, 1915 (PM-2009)


Columbia Graphophone Company, 1915


Columbia Graphophone Company, The Talking Machine World, November 1915


Columbia Records, 1916


Columbia Graphophone Co., 1916


Columbia Records, June 1916