Breathtaking Photos Of Twins With Albinism Highlights The Beauty Of Our Differences

"Without our differences we would only be grains of sand."

In a photo series entitled Flores Raras, São Paulo-based photographer Vinicius Terranova features twins Lara and Mara, and their sister Sheila, among other people and subjects. The name of the series translates to "rare flowers," which is fitting given that the twins have albinism — a rare genetic disorder "characterized by a lack of melanin pigment in the skin, hair, and eyes," according to Slate. 

"Our ethnic, cultural, and physical diversity are like variations of the same flower, Terranova tells BuzzFeed, speaking to his work. "Some may adapt better to winter and others to summer, but all of them, despite their particularities, share basic needs such as receiving and sharing love."

"Although they're very young, the twins Lara and Mara already understand very well the importance of the work they're doing, and how their self-confidence has been helping many people around the world," Terranova tells BuzzFeed. "Along with their older sister Sheila, they've also spread a message of love and respect for differences."

Such a message is especially important in these troubling times for people with albinism: Last year, The Washington Post reported that people who are albino in Malawi are being killed for their body parts. And Ikponwosa Ero, a United Nations independent expert on human rights and albinism, told Al Jazeera that those in Malawi face "systematic extinction:"

"There is a lack of understanding about people with albinism, not only in developing countries but also in developed nations," Ero told Al Jazeera. "You find the albino trope used in movies where they are presented as supernatural beings or strange creatures or as idiotic. So when they bring in this lack of knowledge in the context of poverty, witchcraft beliefs and economic factors, you get a dangerous combination. This is what has led to this current situation."

Terranova's series, however, help to show people with albinism in a positive light. In some of the photos the girls embrace, while in a few other ones, Lara and Mara pose with connected, braided hair. 


So far, the photos have collected tons of positive feedback on Instagram. 

"Absolutely stunning sisters. You can feel the love and strength in each photo!!" one person comments on Lara, Mara and Sheila's account.

"This is quite simply one of the most breathtaking photos I've ever seen of humanity," another adds.

You can find more of Terranova's work below as well as on his Instagram account and website

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