“It was the night I lost a patient who I thought would survive and shared a terminal diagnosis with a man not much older than myself. I hadn’t stopped to eat, drink, or use the bathroom in over eight hours, and by the end I was exhausted. It was a difficult night but not unusual except for one thing: I felt nothing. I struggled to rally the passion I had once felt as an emergency physician. I wondered how long I could continue.”
Heather Patterson was already burnt out working as an emergency physician, and then COVID-19 hit her Calgary emergency room. Thrust into ground zero of a global crisis, Patterson began to chronicle what she saw, photographing her colleagues and patients to show the real impact of the pandemic.
Shadows and Light takes readers to the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic and gives an illuminating, behind-the-scenes view of the real impact of the virus and the heroic front-line workers who have been fighting it.
From the first outbreaks to the hope created by the invention of the vaccine and into the tumult of new waves of the virus, Patterson’s photos are a crucial reminder of what we cannot afford to forget.
On October 14th, in partnership with the Calgary Health Foundation, Heather Patterson was joined by several hundred people at the Pioneer in Calgary for a sold-out book launch to celebrate the release of Shadows and Light. The launch featured a conversation between Heather Patterson and David Gray as well as a gallery exhibition of photographs from the book.
Shadows and Light is available now at gooselane.com/ShadowsAndLight and at your local bookstore.