June 1st, 2009
02:57 PM ET

Unpublished photos of Marilyn Monroe surface

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/SHOWBIZ/06/01/marilyn.monroe.unpublished.photographs/art.monroe.life.jpg caption="A 24-year-old Marilyn Monroe poses for Life magazine in August 1950."]

Stephanie Chen

They were taken before Marilyn Monroe became branded as the voluptuous blonde who oozed sex appeal in dozens of Hollywood films.

They were taken before rumors of an affair with President John F. Kennedy swirled and her mental breakdowns became public.

They were taken before the beautiful actress's mysterious overdose that resulted in her death at the age of 36.

In a collection discovered by Life.com last month, unpublished photographs of Monroe reveal a softer, more innocent 24-year-old budding starlet in a more peaceful time, before her fame peaked.

Her flawless face bears a natural look with minimal makeup, unusual for the star, who was often glamorized in photo shoots with lipstick, designer dresses and expensive jewelry.

Monday would have been Monroe's 83rd birthday.

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