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Photos don't have to be the draining, awkward experiences we may remember from the childhood. I'm not going to take you into a random field you've never been to and have you pretend to be perfect. What's the point of photos if they aren't connected to memories and to your real, authentic self?

looking for photos that are actually fun and meaningful?

authentic, connected, joyful photos


"Everything about working with Ama was absolutely amazing. the photos were more meaningful because it was clear they were invested in not only in the pictures, but in us. with the incredible talent and artistry that Ama has, it was such a wonderful and worthwhile experience."


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I'm Ama (they/she) a photographer obsessed with queer love and celebrating families of all structures. After years as a doula, I see photography as a similar form of care focused on honoring people as they are and creating opportunities for us all to reflect on the love in our lives.

Let's create something special together. 

so glad you asked.

who am I?

as seen in:

yes please!

for you to feel confident, comfortable, and cared for

for your photos to be show real moments of connection

to center and honor underrepresented families

to give you an easy, smooth, supported process from start to finish

my priorities...

couldn't agree more

positive, meaningful representation matters

everyone deserves accurate skin tones in their photos

parents are full, whole people

kin, chosen families, and families without kids are all real families

i believe...

what they're saying

- derrick

"Thank you, Ama, for providing me with pictures and experiences that truly honor our shared hopes and dreams for a more-care centered world."

- Indi & sondra

"We felt 100% comfortable and connected in Ama's hands. They truly make a safe space to create and capture magic."

family portfolio

Ama Merrell is a Chicago family & couples photographer who values creating intentional, authentic, positive representation of the way you love your people. She photographs couples, families, newborns, and kids in Chicago, IL. 

couples portfolio