The Hold Still digital exhibition went live today with 100 images chosen from more than 31,000 entries taken during the coronavirus lockdown. The Queen shared a message saying she was “inspired” by the results of the Duchess of Cambridge’s photography project.
But some fans of the Duchess of Sussex took to Twitter to attack Kate’s initiative.
One wrote: “Karen Middleton has so 0 impacts that the Queen is forced to support her work to be valued.”
Another blasted: “Good for her to support Catherine. Shame she didn’t support Meghan.”
A third claimed: “Fact: It wasn’t initiated by the Duchess. Wasn’t her brainchild but it WAS the idea of the museum of which she is patron.”
But others disagreed, with most Twitter users rushing to praise Kate’s photography project.
One tweeted: “This is so lovely. The project is amazing, moving and powerful! I’m really proud of the Duchess of Cambridge.”
Another added: “The photos are wonderful. Not sure I can articulate…but I feel the experiences are so similar to us all. It left me very emotional. Fantastic project!”
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Kate launched the initiative with the National Portrait Gallery in May.
People across the UK were asked to submit a photo they took during the lockdown.
In the six weeks the photography project was open there were an incredible 31,598 entries.
Kate and a panel of judges chose the final 100 pictures.
As the exhibition went live on Monday, the Queen said: “It was with great pleasure that I had the opportunity to look through a number of the portraits that made the final 100 images for the Hold Still photography project.
“The Duchess of Cambridge and I were inspired to see how the photographs have captured the resilience of the British people at such a challenging time, whether that is through celebrating frontline workers, recognising community spirit or showing the efforts of individuals supporting those in need.
“The Duchess of Cambridge and I send our best wishes and congratulations to all those who submitted a portrait to the project.”
Hold Still focuses on three themes – helpers and heroes, your new normal and acts of kindness.
The panel assessed the images on the emotions and experiences they convey, rather than on their photographic quality or technical expertise.
Judges included England’s chief nursing officer Ruth May, director of the National Portrait Gallery Nicholas Cullinan, writer and poet Lemn Sissay and photographer Maryam Wahid.
A selection of the photos will be shown in towns and cities across the UK later in the year.
The digital exhibition can be viewed at npg.org.uk/holdstill.