Photographer Misan Harriman Denies Editing Meghan Markle Pregnancy Photo Amid Kate Middleton Controversy

"This is crazy."

Photographer Misan Harriman Denies Editing Meghan Markle Pregnancy Photo Amid Kate Middleton Controversy
(Image credit: Getty & Instagram: @misanharriman)

A UK-based photographer is denying claims he doctored a photograph he took of Meghan Markle while she was pregnant as Kensington Palace continues to deal with the ongoing controversy surrounding the wellbeing and whereabouts of Princess Kate.

After the Daily Mail published an article alleging photographer Misan Harriman purposefully doctored the photo Prince Harry and Markle used as their 2021 pregnancy announcement, Harriman shared a video on Instagram denying the allegations.

"Unfortunately there’s been an article on the Daily Mail saying that I have admitted to doctoring the pregnancy announcement portrait I took of Harry and Meghan,” Harriman said on Wednesday, March 13. “Apparently I was switching out trees and meadows and I admitted this in an episode of a podcast called Private Passions. This is crazy.”

The Daily Mail and Harriman were referring to 2022 interview Herman did with the Private Passions podcast on BBC Radio 3.

"They weren't actually under a willow tree, were they?" the photographer said at the time. "They were lying outside in a meadow, weren't they?"

A post shared by Misan Harriman

A photo posted by misanharriman on

The Daily Mail article and Harriman's response come after Kensington Palace released the first "official" photo of Princess Kate since she underwent unspecified abdominal surgery earlier this year. The photograph showed the Princess of Wales posing outside with her three children.

"Thank you for your kind wishes and continued support over the last two months," the Palace captioned the Instagram post, which was signed with a simple "C."

"Wishing everyone a Happy Mother’s Day," it continued. "The Prince of Wales, 2024." (The United Kingdom celebrates Mother's Day on March 10.) The Palace claimed Prince William was not in the photo because he was the one holding the camera. Royal aficionados also noticed that Princess Kate was not wearing her engagement ring or wedding band.

The photo was later pulled by major news outlets, including the Associated Press, after it was found to be heavily altered.

A post shared by The Prince and Princess of Wales

A photo posted by princeandprincessofwales on

In response, Kensington Palace released a statement allegedly from Kate Middleton, who took responsibility for "experimenting with editing" on the photo.

"Like many amateur photographers, I do occasionally experiment with editing," the statement read. "I wanted to express my apologies for any confusion the family photograph we shared yesterday caused. I hope everyone celebrating had a very happy Mother’s Day. C."

Rumors and online conspiracy theories have since dominated the internet as to Princess Kate's condition and whereabouts. Even host Stephen Colbert discussed the controversy during a recent episode of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, resurrecting a 2019 rumor that Prince William had an affair with Rose Hanbury, the Marchioness of Cholmondeley.

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In his Instagram video, Harriman discussed the danger of jumping to conclusions or assuming, based on his previous interview comments, that he had altered an image of Prince Harry and Meghan.

"How that exchange could amount to me admitting to doctoring an image is insidious and really dangerous,” he said. “Any mention of meadows and willow trees came out of the person doing the interview and not my mouth. I did my best to ignore it and focus on what I want to talk about.”

Danielle Campoamor

Danielle Campoamor is an award-winning freelance writer covering mental health, reproductive justice, abortion access, maternal mental health, politics, and feminist issues. She has been published in The New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, NBC, Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, InStyle, Playboy, Teen Vogue, Glamour, The Daily Beast, and more.