Kate Middleton Responds To Photo Controversy: 'I Do Occasionally Experiment With Editing'

Kate Middleton has responded after Kensington Palace was accused of editing the first official photo of her released since her January surgery.

“Like many amateur photographers, I do occasionally experiment with editing,” read the message posted on the X account for the Prince and Princess of Wales on Monday morning. “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.”

The message was signed off “C” for her full name, Catherine.

On Sunday, which was Mother’s Day in the U.K., the Prince and Princess of Wales’ account shared a photo of Kate with her three children: George, 10; Charlotte, 8; and Louis, 5.

“Thank you for your kind wishes and continued support over the last two months,” the post read. “Wishing everyone a Happy Mother’s Day.”

It followed weeks of rampant speculation over her whereabouts and well-being after she had been out of the public eye. Kensington Palace said she had undergone a “planned” abdominal surgery on Jan. 16 and would not return to public duties until after Easter.

However, the image sparked further conjecture after several international news agencies retracted the image because it appeared to have been digitally manipulated.

The photo was credited to William, the Prince of Wales, and was said to have been taken earlier last week in Windsor, The Associated Press reported.

The AP and other photo agencies published the photo after it was issued by Kensington Palace. Later on Sunday, however, the AP said “at closer inspection, it appears that the source has manipulated the image in a way that did not meet AP’s photo standards.”

The agency pointed to “an inconsistency in the alignment of Princess Charlotte’s left hand.”

Though details about the surgery and Kate’s condition are not known, her spokespeople have said it is not cancer-related.