Madonna for Harper’s Bazaar Magazine

Posted on October 07, 2013

Madonna sat down for controversial photographer Terry Richardson, for Harper’s Bazaar. Then they erased her digitally and put a computer simulated version of her in her place. Apparently.


Madonna covers the November 2013 issue of Harper’s Bazaar magazine photographed by Terry Richardson.

“That may sound rather extremist, but growing up in a suburb in the Midwest was all I needed to understand that the world was divided into two categories: people who followed the status quo and played it safe, and people who threw convention out the window and danced to the beat of a different drum. I hurled myself into the second category, and soon discovered that being a rebel and not conforming doesn’t make you very popular. In fact, it does the opposite. You are viewed as a suspicious character. A troublemaker. Someone dangerous.”

Lanvin Resort 2014 Collection

Altuzarra Resort 2014 Collection


The quote is standard-issue Madonna. We can’t really argue with the truth of it, nor for her right to say it, but boy does she ever sound up her own ass. We suppose it’s practically impossible for any person in her rarefied instances to not sound up her own ass, though.

It’s kind of hard to style Madonna in a way that would be surprising or interesting. We suspect a lot of that has to do with Madonna herself, who has a very tight control on her image and has been doing this sort of warrior-woman/hardness schtick for a while now. Harper’s did their best with it, and she does look good here, but it’s all kind of expected. It she really wanted to shock people, she’d let herself be styled in a softer, more romantic style. We’d love to see that; just to see something new and to see if she could pull it off. Get this lady in some insane Marchesa frippery and see if she can have some fun with it, we say. You really want to impress us, Madge? Do Grace Kelly. We dare you.



[Photo Credit: Terry Richardson for Harper’s Bazaar Magazine,]

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  • RussellH88

    What the hell is going on with her boobs in that third picture? It’s like an ass is growing out of her chest.

    Madge, I love you, but they have you airbrushed to where you’re just a floating pair of eyes and lips.

    • shirab

      They don’t even look like boobs. More like a quarter pan of dinner rolls that have yet to be separated.

      • bitchybitchybitchy

        That’s a lot of boobage -photoshop, tape? Seriously, I don’t know that I want to know.

        • halleygee

          Photoshop is relatively painless.

      • Rhonda Shore

        That’s brilliant and i can’t get that image out of my head!

    • Karen Belgrad

      I half expect to see Sir Mix-A-Lot dancing on top of those “boobs”

      • kimmeister

        Exactly! I felt like her chest was mooning me.

    • Jacob Marek

      Baby heads.

      • RussellH88

        Her chest is crowning.

    • marlie

      And she’s not THAT well endowed, so I can’t imagine how painful it must have been to get her boobs to do that.

    • d4divine


    • Darcy H

      I literally guffawed out loud in my office when I saw those. Who decided that looked good!?

    • MarieLD

      I think she has an extra finger, too.

    • Constant Cat

      Your bitchery is on FIRE tonight. Well done!

    • Gina Mondzelewski Small

      Seriously. Enough with the airbrushing. Does anyone really think she looks like that at her age? Hell, she didn’t look like that when she was in her 20’s. Ridic —

  • Qitkat

    I so don’t care.

  • AndiMarie

    Man, I hate Terry Richardson’s photography. That is all.

    • Garcia Loca

      I no not get his appeal at all. It’s just a gimmick, a tired one at that.

      • marlie

        And yet, I read something over the weekend that he’s the highest paid professional photographer. WTF?

        • MilaXX


        • H2olovngrl

          Man, I would love to know what some fashion industry insiders and professionals think of him and his work. Everyone has read the accusations from various models, but someone high up in the industry must have a major hard on for him and his work, because he keeps on getting women to pose for him and he keeps getting the big jobs. Scumbag.

          • alyce1213

            I suggested earlier — blackmail.

          • Kent Roby

            I’m not sure that they would even be “accusations”. I picked up a book of his photography once in a contemporary art museum bookstore, and there were photos of girls LITERALLY blowing him (and others of models doing blow). Keepin’ it classy! YUCK.

          • H2olovngrl

            Yrah, I had heard of this. And some publisher thought it was ok to put it out there. Blatant drug use and all. Why would a “women’s magazine” ever choose to use his work when he is so degrading towards women? Isn’t there someone somewhere who is willing to voice what so many people are thinking? “You want to use Terry Richardson? Eww. No.” I would LOVE to know Joe Zee’s opinion of him!

      • RussellH88

        I think that his style would be interesting if it were used as more of a stark, stripped down look at celebrities devoid of elaborate sets, outfits and props. But instead his photos just have a sleaziness to them that doesn’t seem to comment on anything.

        • AndiMarie

          I agree. If the idea is in fact the “stripped down, see them as actuall human beings look” then it fails in that these shots are just as photoshopped as any others.

        • alyce1213

          A stark, stripped down look at celebrities is nothing new and has been done a million times better by others. This guy’s a hack.

          • marlie

            A disgusting, perverted hack, at that.

    • Coleen

      He makes everything look cheap. EVERYTHING.

      • marlie

        And everyONE.

    • MilaXX

      THIS and I read some where he’s one of the highest paid photographers out there

      • alyce1213

        I can only explain that insanity by imagining he’s got the photographic ‘goods’ on a lot of people and it’s blackmail.

        • annabelle archer

          At the risk of sounding like a tin foil hate wearing loon, I will say this as delicately as I can. I feel the majority of Hollywood is run by some heavily deviant pervs. He may have the goods on them, but he is also among them and is a golden boy of theirs. His p0rn-like images and the mainstream celebs who are featured in them are helping to push this hyper-sexualized agenda.

          • H2olovngrl

            Well put, and a thought I had often suspected myself.

          • alyce1213

            I’ve heard with my own ears a famous producer/director (and husband of a BK favorite) rejecting actresses for a role because they’re “not fuckable.” And he’s well-respected and high up in the ranks. These attitudes are pervasive in the industry, even among the non-pervs, even now with more powerful women in the mix.

          • E2_Remote

            D’oh! And this kind of sleaze is what makes me look at my crazy conservative family members, roll my eyes, and go “Yeah guys, it’s TOTALLY those awful gays and their gay marriage that are ruining our culture.”

          • MK03

            Tina Fey dedicated a chapter to this in her book. She didn’t name names, but she did say that she has heard producers/execs say of casting decisions, “I dunno, I don’t want to fuck any of these people.” She also discussed her theory that, in the entertainment world, calling a woman “crazy” is code for “a woman who keeps talking even after nobody wants to fuck her.” I think she’s right.

          • demidaemon

            I really think that the higher-ups just like him, as annabelle implies here. It’s lame and a little gross, but it’s the status quo.

        • Angela_the_Librarian

          Also, I believe his father was a famous photographer. Nepotism always helps!

      • H2olovngrl

        I feel like this statement should be downvoted, but then it would be like shooting the messenger!

    • annabelle archer

      Hate is not strong enough a word.

    • Lily-Rygh

      I believe he’s the photographer responsible for the latest onslaught of Miley Cyrus photos, too. What a dirtbag.

      • annabelle archer

        It was his most recent onslaught of their collaborations that pushed me over the Miley edge. It is full on disgusting. I lost any bit of tolerance for her.

  • leahpapa

    What a pretty lady! I wonder who she is.

  • Kiltdntiltd

    Boobies! And they clearly did a digital version of her hands as well as her face. In fact, this may be a cyborg doppleganger of her.

    • RussellH88

      I think Bigfoot has been sighted more times than Madonna’s hands.

      • Kiltdntiltd

        Oh,….. nicely done.

      • Rand Ortega

        Well played!

      • NYCGlamourpuss

        OHHHH, SNAP!

    • majorbedhead

      (Apropos of nothing more than seeing your name – I was slightly lost in CT yesterday, on my way to IKEA, and I passed a pub called The Tilted Kilt. Made me think of you.)

      • Julie Ree

        You should explain what The Tilted Kilt is. My husband met a colleague there for lunch, and then came back laughing his ass off at how inappropriate it was for a business meeting. We still laugh about it at the office.

        • majorbedhead

          Well. I just looked it up. I had no idea! It’s like Hooters in Tartan.

          • venusvelvet

            I believe the term is “breastaurant.”

          • bitchybitchybitchy

            The Titled Kilt advertises in infight mags-I’ve seen ads for the company and its franchise possibilties in several of these mags-always with a cute, smiling wench in a travesty of a kilt and a bralet that has hoisted her goods up to the max.

      • Kiltdntiltd

        How sweet! Thanks for thinking of me, its flattering, really.

    • MilaXX

      If she would own her aging instead of all these crazy attempts at hiding and denying I’d respect her more.

      • RussellH88


        You always look worse when you try to deny your age than you ever could by just aging. Everyone gets older and when you look like you’re in total denial about it, it just makes you look silly. Best to own it and flaunt it.

    • demidaemon

      I’m going more with hologram, personally.

  • Erica_Vuitton

    The photoshopping in these is beyond hilarious. Seriously who’s boobs/hands/face us that? Because its certainly not hers.

  • Jessica Freeman

    It’s just nice to see her sans gloves, even if its because she knew they would be photoshopped. Oh, Madge.

  • Glam Dixie

    She has become Ridiculous at this point.

  • hughman

    She’s really giving us all kinds of insane Faye Dunaway in “Network” here.

    “By the way, the next time I send an audience research report around, you all better read it, or I’ll sack the fucking lot of you, is that clear?”

    • RussellH88

      She has meddled with the primal forces of nature.

    • foodycatAlicia

      I was thinking that she’s stolen Lauren Hutton’s face. And apparently Terry Richardson is wanking to Game of Thrones these days.

    • decormaven

      Nailed it. You win the Internet!

  • International Model

    It’s a message that needs to be repeated. The artistic community has begun to value safety and security over risk and adventure. Bless her in ways I never thought when I wore tights in my hair at age six.

  • Diego!

    I saw all the pictures of the magazine and boy that potoshoot and photoshopped version of Madonna look stunning!!!! Congrats to the designer, he/she will get a very large bonus for Christmas! 😀

  • VioletFem

    All this airbrushing on this editorial makes her look like Cassandra from Dr. Who.

    • majorbedhead

      She’s not quite flat enough, but good call.

      • H2olovngrl

        A few more plastic surgeries…

    • H2olovngrl

      Ahahaha!! Excellent!

  • SewingSiren

    Now, who is this?

  • crash1212

    At least she isn’t straddling anything. I’m thankful for that.

  • NYCGlamourpuss

    Jesus, what’s with the tits??

    I get that she has too hard of an edge in her photo shoots, TLo. It’s not that I don’t agree with you. But given that it’s Terry Richardson, we should probably be glad they didn’t re-visit that creepy “little girl” photo shoot she did for Vanity Fair right around the time of the Sex Book. That was Terry Richardson, too, wasn’t it?

  • MaggieMae


  • mmebam

    I kind of forgot she existed, so it’s nice to see her on a magazine cover at all.

  • Elizabetta1022

    Madge has officially created a CGI avatar of herself that she sends to photo shoots, talk show appearances and concerts. The real Madonna is at home watching herself on hundreds of monitors set up in her viewing room. At least, that’s the story I’m telling myself…

  • frannyprof

    At least she’s not wearing those ridiculous gloves.

    • Jumpingjacks

      of course not, photoshop took care of that need

    • kimmeister

      But she has hand jewelry and straps and other doodads covering them up.

  • Shawn EH

    Time to try on the softer stylings of True Blue and Bedtime Stories again? Agreed. I mean, she’s already done everything, but she shouldn’t get stuck in one rut.

  • Vaniljekjeks

    Wow, when did Madonna turn 24?

  • diane {a spot of whimsy}

    UGH having grown-up in the same “suburb in the Midwest” and even attended the same high school as Madonna, I can’t understand why she can’t SHUT UP about it already. With all her world experience and her “British” accent and whatever religion she’s into today, I’ll never understand why she constantly brings it back to our shared town – how is that the only thing she’s consistent on? Move on, Madge.

  • lobsterlen

    Harper’s styled the first dress Madonna was wearing look it was catalog photo-shot for Party City’s Halloween issue. Madonna as the saucy wench.

    Both dresses are lovely but combination of Terry Richardson, Harper’s stylist, photoshop and whatever Madonna’s input was, ruined both of them.

  • Meredith

    Love the bronze dress on the model. Which maybe isn’t saying a lot, since only half is visible. Still.

  • Rhonda Shore

    Madge was a really dangerous and non-comformist teenager…on the cheerleading team. Those pix have been around since the 80s.

  • annabelle archer

    Dear Miley.

    If you can last 30 years, this is your future.

    Good luck with that.

  • Jeremy Thomas Porta

    This looks less like photoshop and more like an oil painting. If the lighting was any brighter she’d have developed melanoma.

  • d4divine

    …at 54 years old, Madge is STILL talking about her outsider shtick…after 30 years of being a popstar…WTF

    • H2olovngrl


    • Winter_White

      I salute her for being strong and determined. But I stopped reading her interviews decades ago after she bragged that she would do anything to shock people. Because once a pop star proclaims that he or she will do ANYTHING to shock me…then nothing they do can ever shock me! Their antics might bring me to disgust, or pity, but no matter how far they go they cannot scandalize me. I’m more likely to just smile indulgently, shake my head a little, and turn the page/channel/other cheek.

  • SportifLateBoomer

    I can’t hate on Madonna. I’m so attached/invested in her looking amazing and doing well, after all this time, because if she is then I am, since I grew up listening to her and we’re close in age.

    I rush to defend her and my other aging 80s-era idol Sinead O’Connor, who’s also had a challenging week.

    I think the second pic is fierce. love the bronze dress and the warrior goddess getup. I’m choosing to see vulnerability in her eyes.

    Agree w/the boyz that would be interesting to see her in softer, more “feminine” clothing as a radical departure.

    • alyce1213

      I see Sinead as the anti-Madonna. Especially now.

    • demidaemon

      I applaud you willingness to stand by and defend Sinead. Not that I don’t agree with her (and Cher’s! Long live the queen!) recent points, but she always causes mixed emotions for me because she’s been all over the place and is a bit too wishy-washy in all her dealings.

  • Erica

    Constantly up her own ass. The best description to date I’ve heard for her. It’s just so tiresome. You’ve rounded the corner on middle age, you have several children. Is it ever not going to be about you and your awesome nonconformity conformity?

    • Pennymac

      Nonconformity Conformity is going to be the name of my vintage thrift store, if I ever buy one.

  • E2_Remote

    Madonna has looked like crap ever since around ’99 when she got into pilates/macrobiotic diets/kabala or whatever the hell turned her into Skeletor’s female doppelganger. Girl, it’s time to return to some soft curves, like the ones you had in that music video where you were schtupping the matador.

  • another_laura

    Wow. These pictures are Not. Aesthetically. Pleasing.

  • gregSD

    All this Terry Richardson discussion really makes me really miss Herb Ritts. His shots of her were Madonna at her best!

    • alyce1213

      There you go!

  • kimmeister

    The reflections in the gold boob panels in the first picture are really weird. Is that her own fishnet-stockinged leg?

  • E. D.

    When is Terry Richardson’s time going to be up?


  • Rhonda Shore

    oops, i didn’t think this had posted and i made the same comment below, but w/o the link…

  •!/Space_Kitty Space Kitty

    Harpers? WE ALL KNOW WHAT MADONNA LOOKS LIKE. FFS. This is insulting to everyone involved.

  • amanda lynn

    I was just wondering that – how amazing she’d look styled demure and 50s.

  • Lattis

    I’m kind of stunned by this because I didn’t recognize her in the thumbnail. If I can’t recognize her immediately as Madonna – THE Madonna – I think it is a fail.

  • bertkeeter

    Bazaar gives good cover!

  • Viviennne

    pl eeeeeeaase, this leather, fishnet, sword, horn and claws act ain’t doing her any favors ….. Madge looks great but it is time for her personal style to evolve and then we might all really be wowed and impressed.

  • formerlyAnon

    Nope. If you don’t want to do the expected, then accept your age and limp through life on only what you can build out of the tattered remnants of personal charms (at the frail, wizened age of 55), your wealth, connections, skills, talent, and drive.

  • cocohall

    The reason Madonna is still even on the radar is precisely BECAUSE of her midwestern work ethic. She has never had the best voice, been the best dancer, or despite her many efforts, been able to act her way out of a paper bag. However, she is willing to work harder than other pop stars, and clearly spend enormous amounts of time in the gym. And let us not forget her series of children’s books which were nothing if not conventional books about kindness and fairplay. I loved early Madonna. I would like to celebrate middle-aged Madonna as I celebrate Cyndi Lauper, Madonna’s contemporary who truly is unconventional and has figured out how to age unapologetically. It can be done, it seems.

  • Paula Pertile

    Are those pointy nails a ‘thing’ now? (like Helen’s on PR). Don’t love.
    She looks half her age here.

  • Judy_J

    The problem with digital photos and photoshop remodeling is that when folks like Madonna are photographed and said photos are not retouched, they look sick, weary, or older than Methuselah. I guess that’s what keeps publications like The Star and The National Enquirer in business. People want to see stars without makeup or on the beach in swim suits that show off the cellulite.

  • kikisayshi

    She is completely not relevant in any way anymore. Whomp whomp.

  • Jacqueline Wessel

    She reminds me of Faye Dunaway here.

  • Therese Bohn


  • Sam Smith

    I continue to be surprised and saddened that Madonna has not embraced getting older. She always seemed to do so well putting on and taking off new identities, these photos remind me of 1990s Madonna so recycled and not original at all.

  • Sunraya

    I admire her because she can squat down like that at her age. I am around her age, and I don’t think I could get up from that position, especially in 6 inch heels. That is all that I noticed, really. :)

  • HeatherMcIlrath

    I will never understand why these magazines continue to work with Terry Richardson. The pictures are simply not good, the retouching is horrifyingly bad (why does she look so yellow?!?!), and those weird floaty shadows behind madge are so distracting. To think that he was probably paid quite a chunk of change to take these pictures of a living legend makes my photographer heart break into a million tiny pieces.

    and I am getting pretty tired of those “there are two kinds of people in the world” cliches….

    wow i am a bitter kitten this afternoon!

  • guest2visits

    I’m not really surprised or impressed that she can look like this with the aid of every photographic trick and cosmetic device now known to man…and maybe some ancient kabbalahic spell, or two. I am sure she can still be little miss hottie, if she wishes. What I’m longing to see from Madonna is an ability to show how great it can be to claim her past as something that made her as stronger person now – at this age; scars, wrinkles and all. That a strong, sexy woman can look older and own it – without resorting to a camp version of her younger self at every opportunity. No one can take away the beauty icon, or musical artist she was, is. But she seems to believe she has nothing new to show or give except this image of aging sex kitten. There’s more than one way to be sexy and she shouldn’t worry about losing the affection of fans or admirers just because she is in her 50s and looks it. It would be great to see her around in something ‘normal’ – there’s got to be alot of cool looks besides workout gear and dominatrix chains.
    These are typical Madonna images…. M looks great; smooshed boobs and crucifixes are not new for her. And I suppose these pictures and this interview are a way of re-introducing herself to generations that just don’t know her.