The Sun‘s royal photographer Arthur Edwards have been photographing the Windsors for the past forty years, but it’s is belief that 2012′s Diamond Jubilee year was the best one yet.
Edwards was the only photographer left when the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge spent the final days of their Southeast Asian tour in Tuvalu.
“It was truly a highlight of my life’s work on the royal beat — and that’s saying something in a year that held so much for us royal watchers,” Edwards wrote in a recap of the year’s festivities.
It was during that point in the trip when topless photos of Catherine had surfaced, and Prince William seemed clearly distraught. It was Catherine, Edwards noted, who put on a smile despite the humiliation she was clearly feeling.
“I was rewarded by what I consider to be one of the best pictures I’ve ever taken of the royals,” Edwards recalled. ”Wills and Kate danced in grass skirts to the island drums. Just look at their faces. They were so happy.”
Edwards flew home with William and Catherine via Australia, and lent them his computer to sift through photos.
“Laughter filled the air as they looked at the slideshow on my laptop while I sat at the back of the jet,” Edwards noted.
After they were done, William walked to the back of the plane with Edwards’ laptop.
“Please, Arthur, could you not put this picture out?” William asked Edwards with a smile, pointing to a photo of himself wearing a head wreath in Tuvalu.
“It’s too late, sir, the pictures have gone back to London,” Edwards replied. “What don’t you like about it?”
“I like it but the lads at the air base will pin it up on my locker and will write nasty comments all over it,” the search-and-rescue pilot explained.
“They can’t do that, sir, you’re a captain.”
“That won’t stop them,” William said with a smile.
Edwards, who has gotten to know Catherine over the past few years, told the Duke how wonderfully she did on the exhausting tour.
“I’d just like to say that your missus has done a brilliant job on this tour and you must be very proud of her.”
“Yes,” William said, “That’s why I married her.”