1 May 2015

Beautiful, Inspiring Portraits Of Brave Ladies Battling An Incurable Disease

Midway through his work on the book Just Breathe–a photo series on adults suffering from cystic fibrosis–Ontario-based fashion photographer Ian Pettigrew realized that there was a disproportionate number of women patients being featured in his work.

According to Pettigrew, an individual’s comment on how the “project [was] just turning out to be a bunch of hot chicks with CF” finally pushed him to start a series dedicated solely to female cystic fibrosis patients.

There is no known cure for this genetic disease which damages the lungs.

Inspiration for the series title, ‘Salty Girls: The Women of Cystic Fibrosis’, came from one of the common symptoms of the disease–salty skin.

The project focuses on the message of feeling beautiful in one’s own skin. He told the Huffington Post, “A lot of this is back to the issue of body shaming. Women with no scars have it bad enough in this digital age, now grow up with massive scars across your belly, and scars from your double lung transplant…[s]eeing how positive they can remain, when dealing with this horrible disease is inspiring”.

Several images of the ladies can be viewed below. Visit Pettigrew’s website to learn more about this genetic disease and the people who battle against it daily.

[via BuzzFeed, images via Ian Pettigrew]