Stunning photo captures the strength of a pregnant woman with cancer

The photo of Kimi Maxell.
The photo of Kimi Maxell. Photo: Facebook/Memories Set on Stone

An Aussie mum who was diagnosed with breast cancer during her pregnancy posed for a powerful photoshoot to raise awareness about the disease.

In 2013, Kimi Maxell was pregnant with her second child when she discovered she had breast cancer. The brave mum then underwent a double mastectomy. 

Maxwell later decided to pose topless in order to raise awareness - and to celebrate her survival.

Three years on, the photo still packs a punch. Standing with her arms raised and biceps flexed, she smiles at the camera. The words "I survived" are written across her chest, with "so did I" written on her baby bump.

Sharing the image on her Facebook page, 'Memories Set on Stone', the photographer Nikki Fisher Holmes writes: "Three years ago today I shared the pictures from Kimi's maternity photoshoot.

"Kimi bravely battled breast cancer whilst also being pregnant. She did the shoot and bared all to raise awareness!"

Holmes, who runs a business making and selling memorial portraits, said she is donating money from each sale to breast cancer research in the month of November.

Speaking to Daily Mail Australia, she said: "Kimi faced her battle head on. I never heard her whinge and she just showed so much strength, which showed through in the photos.

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"Kimi's goal was to raise awareness and she certainly succeeded in that with the photos being shared around the world.

"I was really proud of her and honoured to play a part in that."

As for the photo's star herself, Maxwell has now almost finished having reconstructive surgery and is in remission.

Posting her thanks to Holmes on Facebook she said, "Huge thanks to Nikki Fisher Holmes for doing her part for all the ladies and their journeys."

"You had me almost naked and feeling safe, respected and beautifully captured my message. The ultimate in professional photography I feel.

"Anything you do from your gorgeous heart is a masterpiece."