Royal photographer reveals ‘tricky’ backstory behind ‘iconic’ farewell photo of Duke and Duchess of Sussex

prince harry meghan markle iconic umbrella photo circumstances revealed
(Image credit: Getty)

A royal photographer has revealed the ‘tricky’ backstory behind an iconic photo of Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan Markle.

Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan embarked on their farewell tour earlier this year just weeks before they officially stepped down as senior members of the Royal Family.

And the Duke and Duchess kicked off their last few weeks of royal engagements with an appearance at the Endeavour Awards, where the couple were snapped in what has become an iconic photo.

And now royal photographer Samir Hussein has admitted the 'tricky' way in which the shot of the pair lovingly beaming at each other under a rainy umbrella came about, revealing how the Duke and Duchess felt about the lovely photo.

prince harry meghan markle iconic umbrella photo circumstances revealed

“I spoke to some of their team and they were really happy about it and talking about it,” Samir revealed to Us Weekly.

“It was pouring down with rain, which can be very tricky when shooting flash photography,” the photographer also admitted to Vogue.

“[It] also meant Harry and Meghan would be under an umbrella, which usually means it’s hard to get clean photos of the couple," he continued. "Little did I know these elements would come together so spectacularly to produce a timeless image.”

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“As they walked toward me, I noticed a flash going off from a camera in the crowd behind them,” Samir explained. “I knew that if that light could be lined up to be right behind as they walked, then it could create a dramatic photo, acting like a backlight in a studio shot.

"I managed to manoeuvre myself to line up the flash behind them and then had to work quickly, with just a second or two to get the shot as they smiled wonderfully at each other.

“It’s a one in a million," he admitted, "when all the elements you could wish for as a photographer come together—perfect timing, great lighting, strong symbolism, and amazing subjects".

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The photographer, who says he's been all over the world with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, also talked about how he feels now that the couple have stepped down and moved over to Los Angeles.

“I’m really disappointed that I won’t get to photograph them so much anymore,” he admitted. “I’ve really, really enjoyed photographing them. I’m going to miss photographing them.”

Aleesha Badkar
Digital Beauty Editor, woman&home

Aleesha is Digital Beauty Editor at woman&home, where she gets to share her expertise into all the best techniques, sharpest tools and newest products—with a particular savvy in skincare and fragrance.

Previously, she was Deputy Editor and Beauty & Fashion Editor for My Imperfect Life, where she headed up the beauty, fashion and eCommerce pages. In the past, she has worked as Shopping Writer at woman&home, gained an AOP awards nomination after working on their news team, contributed to Women's Health, Stylist and Goodto and earned an MA in Magazine Journalism from City, University of London.