New photographs have been released of the Duchess Of Cambridge, celebrating her 40th birthday on Sunday.
The portraits, which were taken in Kew Gardens in west London last November by Paolo Roversi, will eventually become part of the permanent collection at the National Portrait Gallery once it reopens.
They show Kate in relaxed poses, wearing different Alexander McQueen dresses.
In one, wearing a red dress, she completed the outfit with a pair of the Queen’s earrings, which Her Majesty had loaned to her.
In another, she is seen wearing a pair of earrings belonging to Diana, Princess Of Wales – her late mother-in-law.
‘Moved by her warmth’
Roversi said that photographing the duchess was “a moment of pure joy” and said with her “positive energy” she can “bring hope to the whole world”.
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He added: “I was moved by her warmth and friendly welcome and enchanted by her shining eyes that reflected the loveliness of her soul and her smile showing the generosity of her heart.”
Ahead of the venue’s reopening in 2023, the portraits will first hang in as-yet unannounced locations in Berkshire, St Andrews and Anglesey – places said to have a special meaning for the duchess.
The duchess famously met Prince William while at the University of St Andrews, marrying him in 2011 in the surrounds of Westminster Abbey.
Duchess is keen photographer herself
Since her marriage to the duke, she has had three children – George, Charlotte and Louis – and has devoted much of her public life to supporting the early years development of children.
Now, the milestone birthday will mark the start of an important few years for the future queen, who will be at her husband’s side as royal events intensify as lockdowns ease, and watch her children grow up.
The duchess has also emerged as a keen photographer herself, often stepping behind the camera rather than being in front of it.
In the past, she has used the couple’s Instagram account to document family life and those causes closest to them.
Snaps of Prince William at the Hindu Kush, as well as portraits of her children are among the images often shared by the duchess.