Kate Middleton ‘danced to waltz mixed with rock ‘n roll’ during her 40th birthday shoot, her photographer has revealed.
To mark Kate’s 40th birthday yesterday, Kensington Palace released three portraits revealing sides of the Duchess of Cambridge, rarely seen by the public. The pictures were taken by Italian fashion photographer Paolo Roversi in Kew Gardens.
A Palace source said: ‘From the three photographs, you can see the three aspects of Kate’s personality. There is the regal side to her – as you can see in the classic shot where she is looking off into the distance; there is the more informal image in the red dress as a modern woman at 40; and then there is the close-up, which offers a more intimate perspective.’
And speaking to Corriere.it, Paolo revealed how he had taken 250 images during the shoot, with Prince William, 39, Prince George, eight, Princess Charlotte, six, and Prince Louis choosing their favourite snap to be released.
Kate Middleton ‘danced to waltz mixed with rock ‘n roll’ for a ‘secret image’ during her 40th birthday shoot, her photographer has revealed
He explained how the family had chosen the black-and-white image in which Kate is facing the camera, calling it ‘a carefree girl returning.’
Meanwhile the photographer explained how he had first met with Kate last November at Kensington Palace for tea, but she initially was ‘apprehensive.’
He explained: ‘Knowing my photos with the models she was a bit fearful in facing a real session, which then required about four hours of work. But once she started it would be very easy, I reassured her.’
Paolo also revealed how during the photoshoot at Kew Gardens, he had asked Kate to ‘dance’ for the camera to get the perfect shot.
Paolo revealed how he had taken 250 images during the shoot, with Prince William, 39, Prince George, eight, Princess Charlotte, six, and Prince Louis choosing their favourite snap to be released
After the photoshoot at Kew Gardens, Paolo was able to narrow down the shots to s eventy, before Kate chose a dozen of her favourites
He explained: ‘In the end I wanted to take pictures in motion, so with that wonderful wide skirt I made her dance in front of my camera, a kind of accelerated waltz mixed with a pinch of rock’n’roll.
‘And it is a secret image for now.’
After the photoshoot at Kew Gardens, Paolo was able to narrow down the shots to seventy, before Kate chose a dozen of her favourites.
The final images were then chosen by Kate and Paolo, with a helping hand from William and the Cambridge’s children.
The photographer explained how he had first met with Kate last November at Kensington Palace for tea, but she initially was ‘ apprehensive’
In the black-and-white pictures, Kate wears Princess Diana’s Collingwood pearl and diamond earrings, while in the side-on portrait her engagement ring, also previously belonging to Prince William’s late mother, is prominent.
In the eye-catching colour shot, Kate looks into the camera, her hand elegantly resting in the pocket of a one-shoulder red dress while her hair billows out over her shoulder
As in all the images, her jewellery is limited to just one pair of earrings – in this case diamonds borrowed from the Queen’s private collection – so her expression is the focus.
The dresses are all by Alexander McQueen, the same design house that created Kate’s wedding dress in 2011.
The images are to be added to the permanent collection of the National Portrait Gallery of which the Duchess – a keen photographer herself – is patron.
They will join other photographs of Kate such as the Mario Testino engagement portrait with William and her 2016 photoshoot for Vogue magazine.
The images are to be added to the permanent collection of the National Portrait Gallery of which the Duchess – a keen photographer herself – is patron
Kate’s photographer, Mr Roversi, is better known for his high-fashion and celebrity work. His previous accolades include photographing a topless Kate Moss, campaigns for designers Dior and Yves Saint Laurent, and transforming the Pirelli calendar from sleazy bikini shots to a more artistic product.
The Italian has said of his approach: ‘My photography is more subtraction than addition.
‘We all have a sort of mask of expression. You say goodbye, you smile, you are scared. I try to take all these masks away and little by little subtract until you have something pure left.’
The Paris-based photographer was last night effusive in his praise for the Duchess, describing the Royal photoshoot ‘a true honour’ and ‘a moment of pure joy’.
He said: ‘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. I have met a wonderful person, a person who, with her positive energy, can bring hope to the whole world.’
The Duchess selected Mr Roversi, 74, in consultation with the National Portrait Gallery.
The images also form part of a roving Coming Home exhibition this year in which portraits of famous people will be displayed in their home towns.
Kate’s photographs will be displayed in Berkshire, where her parents live, St Andrews, where she met Prince William as a student, and Anglesey, North Wales, where the couple spent the first years of their married life.
A Palace source said it was fitting that Kate’s portrait would be part of the exhibition as the Duchess ‘very much sees her role as bringing the nation and communities together’.
The Palace said that Kate would spend her birthday yesterday ‘privately’ while it is thought there might be a bigger joint party to coincide with William’s 40th birthday in June.