13 May 2021


So, here we are! We've officially made it into a book. we're on 3 pages! This double page spread and then in the back in front of the bus stop we were on! 

Life is so incredibly strange still for us as mentioned previously, I am still at risk until baby boy is born and very nearly at the risky 28 week mark too! 26 weeks today (will be uploading a pregnancy update in the next 48 hours) but one thing that's blown our minds over the past 14 months is that I snapped the original image, received the email but didn't read it until 4:30am when I couldn't sleep as the whole house was hotter than the Sahara due to it being mid summer to now! 

We've been on billboards, on the Imax in central London, been on bus stops, Coop tills, in British Vogue, The daily mail, on sky news, on Lorraine, this morning and now in the book. It's honestly mind boggling that little Nicole, small brand photographer and blogger from Southampton has managed this! I am so proud of my two little models too! I am so excited to see them look back on this forever, especially now they've said that they're preserving the images in the National Portrait Galleries archives for future generations. My great-grandchildren will be learning about the pandemic and can say "that's my Nanny/Grandad" or "my great grandmother took that image" and I'll be grey and old like so amazed. 

I am not the most confident photographer, I pick flaws in absolutely every image I take, always comparing to other people and feeling rubbish but here we are, in a beautiful book with so many other beautiful photographers images, picked by the beautiful and wonderful Catherine, duchess of Cambridge and a talented panel of judges from the national portrait gallery and I really do feel proud of me for once. Especially when I see how beautifully crisp my images are blown up! That's definitely a photographers biggest fear. Well, it's mine. How will the image print? Blow up on a canvas, etc... and if you ever were worried, I can assure you it's crisp and smooth and I'm not dissatisfied. 

So I now have a book in my house I have to find somewhere to put it, somewhere it has pride of place! I have my nightmare before dinner book on my gin trolley, it's always been one of my favourite books cause it looks so cool but this is a whole new level of pride. I also have a frame A1 print of it framed in our hallway which was sent to me from the team behind Hold Still and I absolutely love walking past it, I get all warm and happy.

Anyway, here's to the biggest achievement in my career, the most precious image I'll ever have of two of my 4 littlest darlings and hey, even got my mum to declare she was proud... (Woman has a heart of stone, it's literally ice cold, but she shows feelings sometimes... just don't push your luck) seriously though, without her I wouldn't be here writing this post, she was the one that tagged me in the original competition, told me to enter, helped me chose the image and the rest is history, so I guess if I was writing a speech like I'd just won an Oscar, then this one is for you, mate. Thanks Mamma! 

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