When I first saw news of this photo shoot about a paralyzed mother doing a cliff-hanging image with her son for Mother’s Day I kind of blew it off. I thought it would be feel-good and saccharine. I kept seeing it pop up on photography blogs and sites so I finally decided I could spare the five minutes – and I’m glad I did.

SJ Staszak lived a life of adventure and physicality. You can see from her trim figure and toned arms this is not a woman who ever sat around. During a routine surgery she became permanently paralyzed. It changed the life of her and her son forever.

In this project two photographers, Benjamin Von Wong and Karen Alsop, approach the idea from different perspectives. Von Wong is known for pushing the envelope with what is capable in-camera. He often employs elaborate sets, volunteers, and lots of time for his ambitious projects. Karen’s approach was pure studio and Photoshop.

SJ explains her feelings about the two different shoots. Her perspective is incredibly insightful and is sort of a metaphor for life. To see what she has to say you’ll have to check out the video. Enjoy and Happy (upcoming) Mother’s Day!

CLICK HERE to learn more about Von Wong’s Version
CLICK HERE to learn more about Karen’s version