Born in Lima, Mario Testino settled in London in 1976 and took on photography, balancing between the formal compositions inspired by the works of such photographers as Norman Parkinson and Cecil Beaton he produced professionally and the more candid and spontaneous snapshots of his close circle. It was only from the mid-1990s, emulated by the French editor, Carine Roitfeld, that he instituted a new style, closer to his more exultant and sexy background while they initiated for the Gucci campaign the porn chic aesthetic. Polished, exotic and highly glamorous, Mario Testino’s work depicts a jet set crowd and from royals - he was Princess Diana’s favorite photographer - and Madonna to Kate Moss and Gisele Bündchen he helped establish as a supermodel, he is eager to diffuse a positive and solar feel in his images, making his sitters look their best: ‘[Richard] Avedon—he was interested in the off-guard moment. I almost discard those moments—the gloom, the doubt. I will try to predict their most positive and assured moment. I’m the lighter side of life, joie de vivre.’ Dramatically described as the ‘John Singer Sargent of our time’ by London’s National Potrait Gallery’s curator, Mario Testino surely found in the Windsor family a new generation of flamboyant sitters from Kate and William for whom he shot an engagement photograph to princess Charlotte whose christening he is to cover.