‘What we have missed’: Photos capture global hopes for life in post-COVID future

Photographers have been sharing images of what they are most looking forward to when life returns to normal when the coronavirus pandemic is over.

The pictures from around the world have been gathered as part of the United Nations’ Only Together campaign, which is calling for fair access to COVID-19 vaccines around the world to end the pandemic sooner.

Photographer Josh Mainka said the night he captured this photograph of the aurora borealis (northern lights), in Norway’s Lofoten archipelago, the lights began to “dance after a week of clouds and constant rain”.

He hopes the vaccination programme will allow us to “imagine the day when the dark cloud of COVID has passed”.

For many wedding photographers, the pandemic has been a disaster.

Brad Wakefield says 2019 was the last time he shot a marriage ceremony and he was looking forward to getting back out once again and photographing more.

All trips to Africa came to a halt for Sara Jabril when the virus hit, but her picture of worshippers heading to a mosque in Kampala, Uganda, brings her hope that travelling will resume when everyone has access to the vaccine.

Zina Hamu, a Yazidi refugee who is currently studying journalism in Canada, wants vaccines to be available to everyone so she can see her family in the Middle East.

She said: “My photograph of the boys huddled around a fire always triggers memories of my own time living in the camp.”

Werner Kaufhold says attending a concert and watching live music is one of the biggest things many of us miss, so he chose this photograph “because of the look of absolute joy on the girl’s faces”.

“This is the spirit we need to get back,” he said.

Photographer Sevil Alkan’s work has been severely limited due to tough coronavirus restrictions in Istanbul, Turkey.

When she captured the children playing in the water foundation, she said she longs “to be able to return to capture these scenes of pure joy again”.

Best known for his work documenting the long-term effects of war, British photographer Giles Duley said he looks forward to once again “breaking bread with those I love and with the friends I’m yet to meet.”

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