The Art of Scoliosis

My Scoliosis Journey

My name is Sydnee Lubar and I am 17  years old. In 2014, I was diagnosed with scoliosis and was told by my orthopedic surgeon that I would need a back brace consultation. Scoliosis was a new word to me and wearing a back brace was something I never imagined I would need to do. I wondered about my daily comfort, how it would look, and how this process would change my entire life. Choosing Luke Stikeleather as my orthotist was the best decision I could've ever made. It was clear through his revolutionary brace technology and kindness that I was in good hands. Of course wearing a brace took some getting used to. The first nights were sleepless and wearing my brace on the first day of school was terrifying. I thought that scoliosis had ruined my life; however, once I saw the improvement in my curve, my thoughts changed from angry and insecure, to grateful and proud. I realized that having scoliosis takes confidence, responsibility, and toughness. I was determined to continue wearing my brace and decrease my curvature. After a year of wearing my brace for 22 hours a day and two years of wearing it at night, scoliosis has become part of my life. Not only have I seen significant improvement in my curve, but my attitude towards life's challenges has changed. My scoliosis journey is the inspiration for SPINES.

The Project

As I have experienced the challenges of living with scoliosis, it has become my mission to spread awareness about this condition. Most do not know what scoliosis even is and how it can impact the lives of all ages. Through my passion for photography, I want  S P I N E S to bring awareness to this condition and display the beauty of scoliosis. To me, it was important to involve women and children of all ages in order to illustrate the generational significance of scoliosis and how it affects 10 times more girls than boys. S P I N E S is a black and white collection of bareback and brace photos, along with each model's unique story and experience.

 If I had ignored my curve and refused to wear a brace, I would have eventually undergone spinal surgery. Thanks to Luke and his team at the National Scoliosis Center, individuals of all ages can avoid surgery and feel confident in knowing that there is a safe alternative. All of the proceeds of my book will be donated to the National Scoliosis Foundation to promote the research of scoliosis and nonoperative treatment methods. Through S P I N E S,  I hope to highlight the beauty within this physical challenge and illustrate its significance to me.