It's no secret that Kate Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge, has a passion for photography (she even launched a nationwide project centred on it, encouraging the nation to document their time in lockdown). Luckily, it's also something that she has a real talent for too – as evidenced by all the gorgeous portraits of the royal family that she's treated us to over the years.
As well as being something she's naturally interested in, it's thought that there could be another motive for Kate taking on the role of unofficial royal photographer. If she's behind the camera, it means the photos she's able to capture have a more natural feel to them and the family can enjoy a little bit more privacy, free from professional snappers wanting to capture personal moments. Prime example? When Kate took the first officially released portrait following Princess Charlotte's birth back in 2015.
According to one royal expert, Camilla Tominey, The Duchess was inspired by Queen Victoria of Sweden, who has adopted a similar approach with her own family, in an effort to thwart any paparazzi.
Kate's photography skills really shine through when it comes to pictures of her husband Prince William and their three children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, in particular when taking stills of them enjoying time spent in nature.
To celebrate The Duchess' talent, here are some of our favourite photographs that she's taken and treated the nation with. Enjoy!
Prince William and Prince Charles' Father's Day portrait (2019)
This sweet snap of two future kings at Sandringham was first shared on the Kensington Royal Instagram account for Father's Day, June 2020 – however it was taken in December 2019. We love how happy both William and Charles look.
Prince William and his three children George, Charlotte and Louis (2020)
Taken in June 2020, showing the family posing on a swing, we bet Kate felt super proud of this picture. How much of a little cherub is Louis here? A fun family pile-on shot was also shared via the Kensington Royal Instagram account shortly afterwards.
Prince George and his new baby sister, Princess Charlotte (2015)
What an undeniably adorable portrait this is! Kate took this one of Prince George and a then-baby Charlotte not long after she was born and besides the iconic photo of her leaving hospital, and being cradled by her parents on the steps outside, this was the first real glimpse the world caught of the Princess. So lovely.
Princess Charlotte's fifth birthday portraits (2020)
The royals treated us to not one, but five pictures of little Charlotte as part of her fifth birthday celebrations. They show her working hard to create food packages for isolated pensioners in her local area during the coronavirus lockdown. What a wee angel.
Prince Louis' second birthday portraits (2020)
The tot's messy handprint painting session has now been seen by thousands, many of whom loved the symbolism of his rainbow colour scheme, which they believed could have been a subtle tribute to the NHS. We love that The Duchess also shared a little 'Instagram vs Real Life' moment with the public too, in which Louis decorates his face, as well as the intended paper!
Prince George's fourth birthday portrait (2017)
Clearly a friend of the animals, George can be seen here offering to share his ice cream with a very well-behaved looking dog on a picnic blanket at Kensington Palace. Honestly, even the royal pooches look glossier than any dog we've ever seen in real life.
Prince William during a visit to a melting glacier at the Hindu Kush mountain, Pakistan (2019)
While it's undoubtedly a stunning landscape shot, this photograph was shared by the Kensington Royal Instagram account to highlight the devastating impact that climate change is having on the world (something that Prince Charles has long been vocal about).
Prince Louis as a baby with sister Princess Charlotte (2018)
Taken on 2 May 2018, Princess Charlotte's third birthday, the young royal can be seen here giving her new baby brother a kiss and cuddle. So sweet! Prince Louis was just nine days old in this one.
A family Christmas celebration (2019)
The Cambridges chose to share this striking black and white picture of William and the three children in Norfolk by way of wishing the nation a very merry Christmas in December 2019. It certainly warmed our hearts! "We wish all our followers a very happy and relaxing Christmas Day" was part of the accompanying caption.
Prince George's sixth birthday celebrations (2019)
Showing one of her royal offspring donning some casual clothes, George looks over the moon to be repping his England shirt here!
Princess Charlotte's fourth birthday celebrations (2019)
Accompanying a series of images released for Charlotte's birthday (all taken by The Duchess, showing her daughter enjoying some outdoor playtime) were captioned, "The photographs were taken in April by The Duchess at Kensington Palace and at their home in Norfolk."
Prince Charles cuddling Prince Louis (2020)
Posted by the Clarence House social media team, this touching picture shows Prince Louis giving his grandfather a big squeeze. The photo was released to celebrate Louis turning two years old.
Princess Charlotte's first day of nursery (2018)
A big milestone in any toddler's life, Kate was on hand to capture the morning of Charlotte's first day at Willcocks Nursery School. She looks every inch the mini fashion icon in her matching red coat, bow, shoes and backpack. Perhaps it's the princess' favourite colour?
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