The celebrity Christmas card is an annual opportunity to let the world know who you really are and Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have become masters at the art of telegraphing their alt-royal identities through their yearly festive greeting.
In 2018, they irritated almost everybody by sending out a black and white picture of their backs, taken as they watched fireworks on the evening after their wedding earlier in the year. The picture was the only official image to be released from inside their evening reception, and seemed to be seeking to say something about the nexus of fame and privacy.
Eagle-eyed fans swiftly pointed out the striking resemblance it had to a the save the date Meghan Markle and her first husband Trevor Engelson sent to their wedding guests. Instead of standing with their backs to the camera watching the fireworks over Frogmore Lake in Windsor, however, the save the date photo showed Meghan and Trevor sitting on a beach looking out to sea with their arms around each other in a strikingly similar style.
In 2019, Meghan and Harry also sent a message about their cool credentials when they went black and white again, sending out a picture that foregrounded Archie while they looked on in admiration from further back.
For 2020, the couple have chosen to grace the planet with a color picture of their small family sitting outside a playhouse in the garden of their home in Montecito with their dogs.
But just to be different, instead of using a photograph like everyone else on the planet, Meghan and Harry have sent out a stylized drawing of a photograph taken by Meghan’s mother Doria earlier this month. The drawing shows Archie’s shock of bright red hair.
A spokesman for the couple said: “The original photo of the family was taken at their home earlier this month by the Duchess’ mother.
“The small Christmas tree, including the homemade ornaments and other decorations, were selected by Archie, and the tree will be replanted after the holidays.”
Of course it will.
The image was released via The Mayhew, a London-based animal charity of which 39-year-old Meghan is a patron and reads: “Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.”
The Mayhew tweeted the image along with a thank you for an undisclosed personal donation from the royals.
Meghan writes in it: “This year we, as a family, have made donations to several charities with you in mind. From a local California organization that helps families transition out of homelessness, to two of our UK patronages: one that supports animal and community welfare, and the other, a memorial fund for a cherished friend that helps to educate children and fight poverty in Uganda, we have honored their work on behalf of all of us.”