The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge exited the Lindo Wing at St. Mary’s Hospital Paddington last Spring with Prince Louis in hands to introduce their newborn to the world. They posed for the sea of photographers and reporters for a few minutes, as they were making history.
One photographer in particular, Arthur Edwards, the royal photographer for The Sun, has been photographing the royal family for more than four decades. His familiarity with the royal family is well known. Edwards, in fact, has been covering William starting from when he came out of the hospital in his mother’s arms.
5. Royal Births
He has photographed eight royal births and witnessed first hand as the tradition of posing for photos outside the hospital took root. While Princess Diana wasn’t the first royal to give birth in a hospital nor the first royal to be photographed leaving with her newborn, she was the first royal to deliver an heir in the hospital.
People were fascinated and so of course every media had photographers and reporters waiting for her and baby William. Royal commentator Victoria Arbiter explained to MSN that: “It really offered an opportunity to capture a moment in history. There is the future heir Prince Charles with his wife walking out with the future, future heir.”
And it became a modern tradition for new royal mothers to give the world a glimpse of their babies right outside the hospital doors. Modern indeed, as in thousands of years of royal history, only two generations have been doing this.
4. New Tradition
And even over the past 36 years, the mediatic magnitude with which these moments are captured and broadcast around the world has reached new levels. From two TV crews, about 20 photographers, and about five or six reporters for William and some five more photographers for Harry two years later to 300 yards of media when William carried out his eldest son George.
There was a massive media crowd. American network, Australian network there, New Zealand networks, Mexican networks, Greek networks: Everybody was there. And as the crowd of reporters grew and technology improved, so did the number of photographs they were taking.
3. Close Up
People and photographers are hungry for more. Not just the classic Duke-and-Duchess-holding-the-baby-looking-straight-at-the-camera type of shot that Edwards does. There’s also a desire for close-ups of the newborn.
They want to know every detail from how Kate styled her hair to did the Prince cry and what kind of blanket was the baby wrapped in.
2. Fans and technology
And now that the tradition has grown, royal fans are known to camp out outside the hospital, hoping to capture their own photos of the special day.
1. Meghan and Harry
As the Duchess of Sussex’s due date draws near, no one knows which hospital will see the birth of her child or if she will opt for a home birth nor whether Meghan, Harry, and their new baby will pose on their way out of the hospital.
Some think they will if only to reduce the interest and value of paparazzi pictures and them some peace. But she says there’s still a chance they might want to protect their newborn from scrutiny. Harry and Meghan are going to be keen to protect that baby and they have been known to break tradition.