Kate Middleton's official portrait unveiled at the National Portrait Gallery in London

kate-middleton-prince-william-official-portrait.jpgKate Middleton, her husband Prince William and her family were on hand Friday (Jan. 11) at the National Portrait Gallery in London for the unveiling of the Duchess' official portrait, painted by Glasgow-born, South African-raised painter Paul Emsley (pictured above with Will and Kate, and below with the portrait).

"I thought it was brilliant," says Kate, of the portrait. And Prince William says it is "absolutely beautiful."

There were two sittings done with Emsley last spring and summer, one at his studio in Bradford-upon-Avon, which is in southwest England, and at Kensington Palace in London, where Kate and William reside while in the city.

Emsley tells People that Kate wanted to "convey her natural self as opposed to her official self."

"I was always aware of the fact that we would use the hair very much as a kind of a frame for the face, and not too much jewelry apart from the earring, to try to create something of her natural warmth, her natural serenity without too much busyness in the portrait," says Emsley.

"If you are working with someone whose face is just a lovely face, it's harder to find something in the portrayt that gives it some sort of gravitas. In this case, I've tried to do that with the smile and the dimples and the shadows around the face," Emsley cotninues.

"Today's" Savannah Guthrie described her expression as "Mona Lisa"-like. What do you think, readers?

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Photo/Video credit: Getty Images
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