When Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan made a special announcement on Valentine's Day that they were expecting their second child, royal watchers were thrilled by image that accompanied their happy news. The couple shared a beautiful black-and-white photograph taken at their Santa Barbara, Calif. home.
The image shows the Duchess of Sussex resting her head in her husband's lap as she cradles her growing baby bump. The barefoot Duke of Sussex smiles down at her, laughing. The two are resting underneath a tree in a mesmerizing garden at home.
A spokesperson for The Duke and Duchess of Sussex: “We can confirm that Archie is going to be a big brother. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are overjoyed to be expecting their second child.” The photo was taken remotely by longtime friend and photographer Misan Harriman. pic.twitter.com/qbi1TeUgRr
— Emily Nash (@emynash) February 14, 2021
The photo was taken by Meghan and Harry's longtime friend, Misan Harriman – and he wasn't even with them at the time! He was actually nearly 9,000 kilometres away.
The 55-year-old self-taught photographer took the image remotely from the U.K., and did it by using the Sussexes' iPad, he told Good Morning America's Robin Roberts on Feb. 16.
"In the age of COVID, you know, it's impossible, obviously, for me to be there to shoot it, so technology came to [the] rescue, and I was able to remotely take over the iPad," he shared. "They could hear my voice, and it was conversational, and the rest really is history."
The image has been praised by royals fans and other photographers since its release. Misan pointed out that the tree behind them adds an additional metaphor to it. Trees are, quite literally, life-givers, since they breathe out oxygen that we breathe in – and that animals breathe, as well. And let's also not forget trees are seen as symbols of birth, life and new beginnings in nearly every world religion, from Christianity, Judaism and Islam to Buddhism and Hinduism and more.
"You don't even see the image – you feel it," Misan, who started taking photographs in 2017, told Robin. "They're lost in each other, and the tree in the background and life growing around them... it's incredibly powerful and symbolic."
— Misan Harriman (@misanharriman) February 16, 2021
In November 2020, Meghan wrote an emotional essay for The New York Times in which she revealed she and Harry had suffered pregnancy loss that July. Misan, said he hopes those who have gone through something similar can look to the photograph as a beacon of hope.
"I think this picture, from my point of view, represents fortitude, hope and love – and for particularly, the many women who go through this, this should give them strength to know that there's life in that dark place, so it really means a lot," he said.
The dad of two, who attended Harry and Meghan's 2018 nuptials at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle, said he thinks it's pretty clear when people look at the image that they'll see just how in love the couple are.
"I think the universe would have conspired for them to be together no matter what," he said. "It is the real deal, and they are waltzing through life together, as they should be, and to have a new arrival coming is a testament to the power of the relationship that they have."
Meghan and Harry's announcement coincided with a happy anniversary for the Sussexes: on Valentine's Day 1984, newspapers announced the happy news that Princess Diana was expecting her second child. That baby, of course, was Harry.
Diana is an early frontrunner among name choices, as well. Bookies Betfair and Ladbrokes have revealed if the baby is a girl, there are currently 10/1 and 6/1 odds, respectively, that the baby will be named Diana. Spencer, the People's Princess' surname at birth, is a popular choice if the baby is a boy, at 10/1 odds at Ladbrokes and 25/1 odds at Betfair.