The Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, now 38, has enthusiastically filled the footsteps of her late mother-in-law, Diana, by continually standing by the public, even in times of great distress like the Covid-19 pandemic, which claimed the lives of many citizens of the UK. At the decline of the epidemic, the Duchess has stepped forth, facilitating rehabilitation struggles as the face of the Royal family.

The ‘Hold Still’ Photo Project

In May, Kate urged the people to document the ‘new normal’ of their daily lives brought about by the quarantine, and through pictures, share how they have adapted to it. The ‘Hold Still’ project initiated by Kate alongside the National Portrait Gallery aims to collaborate a collection of pictures that captures this unprecedented time of Britain’s history through the lens of the public.

The ‘Hold Still’ Photo Project

Headbox | The portraits will be displayed in the National Portrait Gallery

The Criteria for Submission

The Britons were encouraged to submit their portrait under three themes which were:

  1. Helpers and Heroes
  2. Your New Normal
  3. Acts of Kindness

There were 31,598 portraits submitted to #HoldStill2020 where people shared their sufferings brought about by economic closure, the acts of compassion that became widespread to help the affected, and the way life molded itself into a new cast due to the strict lockdown measures observed worldwide. The panel of judges weighed each portrait based on the emotion they conveyed and the ingenuity of the idea rather than the picture quality.

The Duchess, now a mother of three children, shared pictures of her own life in lockdown, starting from that of her son, Louis, on his second birthday in April, where he was dotingly captured splashing rainbow-colored paints. The rainbow colors were endorsed as a tribute to frontline health workers who felt a surge of responsibility due to the novel virus.


Insider | Louis looked simply adorable in the pictures she shared

Sophie Wessex becomes a participant in the Photo Project

Another royal, Sophie Wessex, the daughter-in-law of the Queen, too, submitted her portrait in the competition to support Kate. She submitted a picture of a volunteer named Ali, captured at the mosque where she was volunteering while he basked in the pleasant feeling of being helpful to others. She called the portrait “Packed with Love.”

Sophie Wessex

People | The Countess of Wessex

The Duchess of Cambridge has announced that the 100 portraits selected will be displayed in a digital gallery, which she calls “a gallery without walls.’ She has shared glimpses of a few paintings that had made into the final selections and revealed that all these 100 portraits would be unveiled by 14th September.