Lupita Nyong’o for New York Magazine

Posted on February 10, 2014

We’re out NYFWing like mad at the moment, darlings. Here. Have something fabulous to tide you over.


“12 Years a Slave” star Lupita Nyong’o is featured in the latest issue of New York Magazine photographed by Erik Madigan Heck and styled by Rebecca Ramsey.

Giorgio Armani Spring 2014 Collection

Stella McCartney Spring 2014 Collection

Balenciaga Spring 2014 Collection



We have to admit, this seems like a waste of her abilities. She looks beautiful, of course. And while none of the pictures are bad, they don’t really take advantage of the kind of drama she can bring when she’s working a lens.



[Photo Credit: Erik Madigan Heck for New York Magazine,]

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  • Carleenml

    not loving it.

    • Trent

      Agreed. The fabulous Lupita in what looks like two bathing suit cover-ups and a lace apron? What a missed opportunity. Also, not loving the lipstick.

      • Lucía Gavello

        I agree about the lipstick. Also, I don’t usually complain about photoshop but this is some sloppy editing, they airbrushed her gorgeous bone structure.

      • sojourneryouth

        Yep. They Black Barbie’d her with the lipstick, for sure.

    • Violina23

      I was going to say the same thing… not that she looks BAD, but not NEARLY as striking as she usually is. Which is pretty damn striking…

  • TrixieConQueso

    In their quest to be edgy, they went over the edge for me. Her beauty does not need all these tricks.

    • Darren Nesbitt

      Lupita standing with her arms folded? What is this? We know she can do candid pretty… But can someone let her push the drama! I’ve seen her channel Grace Jones a few times. Let’s do more of that please.

  • Glam Dixie

    Eh, she looks great and all, but this is all just ok.

  • imperfectlaura

    I love the concept, but I think it’s better for someone other than Lupita. Lupita gives such good face that the staging and outfits don’t really seem necessary. I don’t love the makeup in the second one either. However, t’s damn near impossible for Lupita not to be head-turning, and this is no exception.

  • MilaXX

    I love that she’s Hollywood’s It girl of the moment, but I only really like the last picture here.

    • mjude

      I have issues with the lipstick. adore her tho

    • Danielle

      TBH she should be Hollywood’s It Girl For Life.

    • SuzBald

      The last picture spoke to me, too. I would love to see her wear that dress sometime and accessorize it and play it up the way she does.

    • fursa_saida

      Same. That last picture really arrested me.

  • Danielle

    I love the Balenciaga on her.

    • charlotte

      And I think it looks like she is wrapped in a fancy sheet.

      • Danielle

        Really? Because that’s how I feel she looks in the Giorgio Armani.

    • lamamu

      Agree. Its structure drapes on her beautifully.

  • mmebam

    *sigh* Go home, Erik and Rebecca, and start again. Miss Nyong’o may stay, of course.

  • Nicole Little

    I like the last shot far more than the first two. Too much lipstick!

  • SweetJess MeanGreen

    The Stella M shot is off. She looks like she’s squinting from the light and it makes her look hard. I love the pieces but the photos don’t do her any favors.

  • Jessica Freeman

    “Meh” is what I thought.

  • Kate Andrews

    I really don’t care for the lipstick.

  • @Biting Panda

    Someone must not of known who they were working with and what she is capable of giving. This was lazy.

  • Snoskred

    You know, anything which involves Lupita is an epic win in my book. Even badly thought out photo spreads are still a win, because LUPITA.

    I love that red dress/tunic on her, but I wish they’d not gone with the white pants cos the bottom half of that shot gets weird.

    I don’t know if y’all follow her instagram, but she went to Jamaica. :)

  • foodycatAlicia

    Odd idea, to make her melt into the background.

    • JauntyJohn

      I know! I HATE that. What is the point of putting the dress in front of the dress fabric? It’s just stupid.

    • Kent Roby

      As I posted below, this idea was used a good bit in On a Clear Day You Can See Forever in 1970; google “Streisand Clear Day Matching” and the 3rd image has her in a busy floral print dress, with the sofa, curtains, wall, and bedside table all covered in the same fabric! It’s just not working here with Queen Lupita.

      • JauntyJohn

        I can see it working in a movie but not the stills… but seriously dude, Big Props for identifying the reference. A quiet favorite of mine. “My name is Melinda!” And Jack Nicholson is like, what, all of 21 in that?

      • mjude

        how I wanted all those clothes in that movie when I was a young teen!

        • StellaZafella

          I just wanted the diamond turban from the dinner scene…oh, and la Streisand’s nose.

  • Scimommy

    Not surprisingly she looks the best with the simple black background (3rd photo). The crazy backgrounds that match the clothes distract from the real attraction – her face.

    • Daisy Walker

      And the hiddy make-up in every shot. Wipe that shet off and start over.

  • marlie

    The first picture is beautiful, but otherwise, I’m underwhelmed by the photos.

  • boweryboy

    Was she a model before she became an actress? Becasue the gurl has it going on – even in this lackluster editorial.

  • Stella Zawistowski

    Is that a white romper covered in insects? Someone is going REALLY far to prove that this woman can look good in anything!

  • charlotte

    There is no need to play “Find the Lupita” with us.

  • SayWhaaatNow

    Maybe my expectations have just been raised too high, but these pics don’t do anything for me. The makeup game is off.

    • sleah_in_norcal

      that makeup is awful! the light lipstick plus the pink eyeshadow= yuck. how could they do that to her beautiful face?

      • SayWhaaatNow

        Just in general, you don’t put pastel colors on a dark skin tone. There may be exceptions to this rule, but usually when you have a dark skin tone you can really rock vivid, bright colors, or metallics, or anything else that is bold. Pastel colors tend to make darker-skinned girls look cartoony.

    • decormaven

      Not loving the cosmetics as well. You know it’s a poor job when she doesn’t look less than fab.

  • rarero

    She is the Dame Judi Dench of fierce.

  • MoHub

    I love that even when the fabric of the outfit matches the backdrop, she still stands out. She is perfection.

  • sagecreek

    She still looks consistently better than the models.

  • Kent Roby

    The “On A Clear Day You Can See Forever” concept is not working for me. I’m giving the photographer and stylist the Ryan Murphy Award for underutilizing this diva’s gifts.

  • Anna

    Breaks my heart to say that I’m underwhelmed with something featuring Lupita. She will always be beautiful, but her talents were under-utilized here.

  • VioletFem

    This is pretty but her editorial for Vogue Italia is way fiercer and really plays up to her strength as an actress.

  • Josefina Madariaga Suárez

    I was needing my daily dose of Lupita, I can’t even bother that she was missused. Thanks, TLo!

  • alyce1213

    What a waste indeed. Who put that awful lipstick on her? The Armani is an ugly curtain, the McCartney is more-than-typically hideous, the Balenciaga . . . well, it’s editorial. The concept is trash. Like a slap in her gorgeous face.

  • RussellH88

    She could cut diamonds with those cheekbones.

    • Josefina Madariaga Suárez

      Is it wrong that I wanted to make a racist joke out of that one?

      Who am I kidding, of couse it’s awfully wrong.

  • colleenjanel

    I know that runway models frequently have to work with shoes that don’t fit, but damn my feet ache for the poor girl in the last shot!

  • Sarah

    The whole “eyeshadow is one sort-of-clashy-shade off of the lipstick” thing is not working for me, styling-wise, nor are the poses, really, but no denying she’s lovely. First shot is the best.

  • Jennifer Schiller

    I actually love the last photo. I think it’s high drama, and the shadows playing with her skin tone make for an visually interesting look. Plus the way the light hits makes her look vulnerable but confident, like she’s wearing little makeup and is just gorgeous and owning it staring into a mirror and smiling at herself. She really is make that last dress sing as it drapes over her.

    The others are pretty, nothing amazing, but pretty nonetheless.

  • smayer

    I love the frosty pink lipstick on her.

  • LesYeuxHiboux

    They almost seem like test shots. A ‘C’ for effort.

    You two, on the other hand, get an ‘A+’! The level of output you maintained over the weekend is amazing, take care of yourselves.

  • SugarSnap108

    Whose idea was this? “Hey, let’s make her body meld into a background wall, and insult her face with hideous makeup.” The last shot is by far the best, but even that one’s letting her down.

  • Sophie

    I like her better with darker lips and shorter hair. She’s pretty here, but she has been beautiful elsewhere.

  • jw_ny

    Not a fan of the makeup, clothing, backdrop…am a fan of LN tho. :)

  • Noah

    A question: is this horrible lighting or did they digitally lighten her skin? This is so old.

    • jw_ny

      yup…she’s airbrushed to within an inch of her life….especially the one in red. it’s so wrong.

  • yethica

    The styling is kinda dumb.

  • CLoverleaf

    I’m sorry, I just got distracted by the toe situation in the last picture. O_o

  • GregoireNYC

    The problem with this spread is that we now know what an insanely clever and gorgeous human being she is. Her energy has brought to life so many photographs in the past two or three months. This is way too art directed. She’s not an object in a collage. Her vibrancy is what’s made her the IT girl of 2014 so far. These appear to bury her underneath too many ideas. I would say that even the clothes suffer. This might have worked with a more whimsical fashionista (Rita Ora, for instance), but not with a star whose power onscreen and on camera does not need to be cluttered.

  • Kat

    The Armani looks amazing with her skin but I don’t like the concept of the shoot. I have to say, she wears clothes wonderfully.

  • LJCdoc

    She really makes the shittiest shit look terrific, doesn’t she? I hate every one of these things on the models, yet she looks gorgeous as usual.

  • Miss wks

    the makeup artist blew it…

  • LaSylphide

    Don’t like the pink and blue, just not flattering colors for her. The rest are nice, especially the black & white. But the makeup.??? WTF???

  • Joy

    I hate all the clothes.

  • kim bunchalastnames

    the thing that looks the best on her? the intelligence in her eyes.

  • stubbornthoughts

    She seems bored to death with this. It’s the same face for everything.

    Much prefer Ms. Nyong’o when she’s got fire in her eyes and a playful glint.

  • The Versatile Chef

    Can’t say I’m on board with the frosty pale lipstick. Looks like she just ate a sugar cookie.

    As someone else said further down the thread, girl doesn’t need help looking beautiful.

  • Janet B

    Obscuring her beauty.

  • Trickytrisha

    Somebody succeeded in making our luscious Lupita look less luscious. The styling and lighting are pretty awful, IMO. I mean, come on… they’ve practically given her a mustache in that first picture. Then the floppy toes on the bottom model… oh lord.

  • Sadie-Ann

    She looks a little like really pretty pottery. Maybe it’s just the way everything matches the background.

  • MissusBee

    The theme seems to be: “Lupita blends into the background.”

    Fashion editors be crazy.

  • Esz

    The last pic looks like an illustration more than a photo

  • demidaemon

    Yeah, she’s beautiful, but there is something off in these photos. I can’t tell if it’s the angle, the lighting, the direction, or some badly chosen Photoshopping.

    • Qitkat

      All of the above, plus lousy clothing and weird makeup.

  • AnnaleighBelle

    I do not like it, Sam I Am. Where is Lupita in any of those pics?

  • KT

    COLOR! YES! These pics are giving me LIFE! ALL CAPS SO YOU KNOW I MEAN IT

  • quiltrx

    I really love the red/white picture. The setting takes the focus off the outfit, somehow makes it better. That runway version is unbelievably cheap and shitty looking (way to go Stella).
    This photographer and stylist definitely didn’t know what to do with Lupita.
    Speaking of people who DO know what to do in magazines…I MISS OUR VOGUE KOREA FIXES!

  • Jacob Bowen

    Ohhhh my FAVORITE photo from the magazine isn’t in this set! The blue background with the red flower headpiece is STUNNING!

  • Fabulous-Femme

    Love the shots … dress and the background in the same fabric :-)

  • UsedtobeEP

    Yes. There is no reason for all of this. With her, less is always more.

  • Charles

    She’s phenomenally gorgeous, but these are resting on pretty. She could do so much more if they’d just let her.

  • Josefina Madariaga Suárez

    They fucked up her hairline on the second picture, how could they?

  • Therese Bohn

    I like the black and white — but wish they didn’t turn her into a floating head in the first two. When you’ve got Lupita, you don’t obscure her!