Vanity Fair: The Portraits: A Century of Iconic Images
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Vanity Fair: The Portraits: A Century of Iconic Images

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  500 ratings  ·  25 reviews
Vanity Fair: The Portraits brings together 300 iconic portraits from Vanity Fair’s 95-year history in a remarkable book that captures the image of modern fame — the magical thing that happens when individual talent and beauty (and sometimes genius) is caught in the spotlight of popular curiosity and passion. The photographers — from Edward Steichen and Cecil Beaton to Anni...more
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published September 1st 2008 by Harry N. Abrams (first published 2008)
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Having had a front row seat spanning nearly 100 years in the worlds of style, celebrity, politics and power, no other magazine has quite the ability to showcase the talents of such a broad array of famous photographers as well as the breadth of personalities presented here. From early photographers like Edward Steichen, Cecil Beaton and Man Ray to modern day lenssmiths such as Irving Penn, Herb Ritts, Helmut Newton, Bruce Weber and, of course, Annie Leibowitz, ‘the Portraits’ offers an unprecede...more
Dorota
FINEST EXAMPLES OF PHOTOGRAPHIC CRAFT EVER TO APPEAR IN THE MAINSTREAM PRESS
I'm so glad that, thanks to my daughter winning a 2nd place in some photography competition for Middle-schoolers, this book landed on our coffee table. It was first published in 2008 and I really do not understand how I could have missed it then!

Vanity Fair photographs have always been drawing attention and generating controversy ever since Condé Nast first opened the monthly in 1913. "A Century of Iconic Images" gathers...more
Sydney
This is an interesting book. I love looking at all of the pictures.Even though some of them are not appropriate for me.mainly all of their outfits are very cool. I recommend this book too people who like to look at pictures instead of a lot of words.
Vanessa
An amazing collection of Vanity Fair's portraits. They photographs in this book is absolutely stunning and it was interesting to read about Vanity Fair's back story and how it came to be today
Jen D. Fabico
I saw this book during a visit to NY. The instant I saw it, I knew I had to have it. Essentially it was an impulse buy but it's one that I cannot and do not regret. It's huge and hardcover and let's face it: Vanity Fair will usually not disappoint when showcasing amazing photographers and their subjects.

I give this HUMUNGOUS beast of a book 5 out of 5. It is beautiful inside and out and proves as a great refence and inspiration. So there you have it!
Nicole
I received this hefty coffee table tome as a going away present from Newark Academy, mainly because everyone there knew how much I loved photography. The images here are iconic, but not necessarily because they are great photos. These are images of the rich and famous, and for that alone they are intriguing. When you want real photography, though, go seek out Weegee or Arbus or Nadar.
Leigh
I was amazed at the variety of photographs in this book. Famous people from the past and current celebrities provide a fascinating study of styles past and present. I got this book as a Christmas book and happily spent most of Christmas afternoon studying the photography and reading about the history of the magazine Vanity Fair.
Dewayne Martin
For me, this was much more than a simple coffee table book. This was an avenue for me to view and inspect some of the best portraiture over the last century. I highly recommend to anyone serious about portraiture, especially portraiture that is more creative than standard. This book was fascinating to me. I wish they would do more.
Cynthia
Nov 12, 2008 Cynthia rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone who loves people art, history or life
Recommended to Cynthia by: NY Times
This book is both beautiful and informative. Some of the portraits are iconic, others are rare glimpses of historical and literary figures that, physically, you couldn't pick out of a crowd, although they are geniuses in some field. Everyone should sit down with this book, just to look, for at least an hour.
Simone Collins
Ok, so I just looked at the pictures, but that's 99% of the book anyway (which, by the way, is HUGE!!!). The lighting in all of these portraits is... amazing. Lighting really does make all the difference, doesn't it?
Jessica
While I love the modern portraits, especially those by Annie Leibovitz and Mario Testino, I was amazed by the clarity and character expressed in the photos from the 1920's & 1930's.
Alyssa
I know it's portraits so it's not really reading, but it is a great book! It makes me wish I had actually taken photo in high school instead of just spending all of my time down there....
Erik
Gorgeous and iconic photos throughout, it is more than just a coffee table book. It provides great reference to artists, as well as something just to admire. Awesome!
Lindsey
There were some really striking photos but the captions cracked me up. Also, I never realized how boob friendly Vanity Fair was until I looked through this book.
Darcy Bradshaw
Amazing photography book that I got for Christmas. People from all different walks of life and culture. Absolutely fantastic!
Margarite Baltruweit
This is a book that will no doubt be adorning the coffee tables of the world's culture brokers for many years to come.
Elizabeth
If you are into portrait photography and appreciate a wide range of style, time, and people this is a book for you!
e
I just happened to open this at work, and found that such a ridiculous magazine could produce such beautiful portraits!
Drew
Superb coffee table book of stunning photography....not much else to add....open, admire, enjoy.
Jaime
Simply amazing. A picture tells more than a thousand words.
Rachel
No one can NOT look at this great coffee table book.
Judith Wright
Beautiful photography! Love this book.
Jess
It takes some guts to pose naked....
David Kuhn
David Kuhn marked it as to-read
Sep 12, 2014
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Edward Graydon Carter is a Canadian-born American journalist and author. He is editor of Vanity Fair. He also co-founded, with Kurt Andersen and Tom Phillips, the satirical monthly magazine Spy in 1986.
More about Graydon Carter...
Vanity Fair's Tales of Hollywood: Rebels, Reds, and Graduates and the Wild Stories Behind theMaking of 13 Iconic Films Vanity Fair's Proust Questionnaire: 101 Luminaries Ponder Love, Death, Happiness, and the Meaning of Life Spy: The Funny Years Vanity Fair 100 Years: From the Jazz Age to Our Age What We've Lost: How the Bush Administration Has Curtailed Our Freedoms, Mortgaged Our Economy, Ravaged Our Environment, and Damaged Our Standing in the World

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