Monika Ottehenning is a queer photographer, artist and writer based in Los Angeles, California.

Raised as a Mormon girl in the suburban forests of North Carolina, Monika began her photographic explorations at age twelve by documenting her father’s homeland on a trip to Germany. Upon returning, her love of the camera evolved to capturing teen social life, parties, live music, and the various fashion projects she pursued with her twin sister. She moved West to continue her interests in the arts, eventually receiving a BFA in photography from BYU in Utah while tending to a shattering faith crisis. After graduating, she moved to Los Angeles to continue her creative practice and find life after organized religion.

Today, her work is nurtured as an opportunity for people to see themselves more honestly and compassionately. Her emphasis is on the experience of creating them together, working through emotional barriers, stories, and self perceptions that limit sovereignty and a deeper acceptance of self. Portait sessions are full of expression, sensuality and vulnerability as medicine for creators to feel more of who they really are, and leave with tokens of their own magic. 

Through a decade of commercial experience, Monika directs imagery that is rich in color and humanity. Her practice in empathetic storytelling reveals the collaborative and heartfelt approach she takes to her work, combining visually vibrant, playful and natural movement when celebrating her subjects and their stories.