#visionariesaremade - Mother's Day 2017 / page 11

May 2017

Visionaries are not born; they're made.

What makes someone a visionary? Perhaps it's the ability to see possibility where others do not.

Cecilia, Isabelle, and Alexander

Studio photo of Cecilia, Isabelle, and Alexander
Photo by Cecilia and Jacob Lee

Cecilia: Having Alex made me go back into photography. I just didn't like the way people captured Alex. Photography is very honest. If the diagnosis is the first thing that you see, that's what will be most visible in the image. I just couldn't deal with the fact that the photos of people with disabilities that were shown most of the time all looked like medical reference pictures so my husband and I teamed up with Early Intervention and decided to build a library of photos of families with kids with various disabilities where you can see children as children first.

I love doing what I do. I get to travel around meeting the most wonderful families and photographing the most beautiful individuals who happen to have a disability. Sometimes it is not the easiest thing to do but it certainly is the most rewarding, humbling experience for me as a photographer. People with disabilities are brutally honest and it clears comes through in the pictures. If you zoom out, you're only going to see their disability but if you zoom in really close, they're so ready to open up and share their story. And their eyes tell you lots of wonderful stories. You just have to open up your heart and be ready to listen.

Next: Learn more about some of the mothers who led Pennsylvania's Intellectual Disability Rights Movement

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