Kirsty Wynn is a senior reporter at the Herald on Sunday.

Look how those cute babies soared

Tyla Nathan-Wong is chasing Sevens glory in Rio. Photo / Greg Bowker
Tyla Nathan-Wong is chasing Sevens glory in Rio. Photo / Greg Bowker

She has flown to Rio de Janeiro for the Olympics but 22 years ago Tyla Nathan-Wong was a little sparrow in no danger of flying the nest.

Women's Sevens rugby star Nathan-Wong has come a long way since she featured in the best-selling Anne Geddes' coffee table book Down in the Garden in the late 1990s.

Anne Geddes, who photographed dozens of Kiwi babies in the 90s, and now works out of New York, said she vividly remembers photographing Nathan-Wong as a baby.

"I remember the day of this shoot very clearly - how cute the chubby little 6-month-old looked in her gorgeous costume," Geddes said.

"Tyla's done incredibly well and I'm so proud of her.

"To think that the beautiful little 6-month-old 'Wet Sparrow' I photographed 22 years ago would now be competing at the Olympic Games gives me goosebumps!" she said.

Nathan-Wong flew to Brazil last week to prepare for the Olympic games which kick off tomorrow.

The Women's Sevens team are one of the favourites to win despite Australia winning the 2016 Women's Sevens Series title.

Australian-born Geddes said she considers herself an "Australian/Kiwi" and can't wait for the Olympics to begin.

Tyla Nathan-Wong's picture in Anne Geddes' book.
Tyla Nathan-Wong's picture in Anne Geddes' book.

"We now live in New York, but hopefully some of Tyla's competitions will be covered here.

"I consider myself an 'Australian/Kiwi' and I wish her well, along with her teammates."

Geddes turns 60 in September and to mark the milestone she's working on a new book.

For that Geddes plans to reconnect with all the babies photographed in the late 1990s to see where they are now.

Every week Geddes will post one of her well-known images to her Facebook page with news of what the babies are doing now.

She has already reconnected with a number of her New Zealand-based babies who are now in their 20s.

"It's been very gratifying to hear from my early babies and see and hear about what they're doing today," Geddes said.

If you were one of those babies and you'd like to take part Geddes would love to hear from you at babylookatyounow@gmail.com.

"Send a favourite recent photo of yourself and tell me a little about what you're up to today," she said.

Geddes' book Down in the Garden made it on to the New York Times Bestseller List.

Her books have been translated into 23 different languages.

- NZ Herald

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