We had the good fortune of connecting with Johannes Ahonen and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Johannes, what role has risk played in your life or career?
I am a quite impulsive person and taking risks is part of my nature. That has had both positive and negative effects in my life, but what goes into filmmaking and an entrepreneur, for me risk taking is a key factor for my success this far. When I started my business with an entry level dslr with just one lens, and an old pc, I had gone through personal bankrupcy and I was really struggling, both financially and personally. It would’ve been smart to get a normal job and start to get my life together smoothly, but I just couldn’t let go of the idea of being an filmmaker and an entrepreneur – so I took the risk. For the first one and a half years, I stayed broke. Actually things got even worse than it was. Literally all the few hundred euros I got from small client work went back to my business, building up my gear and the absolute essentials that I needed for getting me further. And I still am taking the risk today. I keep on building my business and pouring the vast majority of the revenue back into the business, and for my personal development as a filmmaker. So that’s the financial risk, but what about the personal risk? I made a choice to let go off all the things in my life that are NOT taking me further towards my goal – to make a feature film and to be a successful entrepreneur. It is a huge risk and a sacrifice to dedicate yourself so fully to something, that you just leave all the other things in life outside of it. But for me, that’s what I have to do. My only option. If you want something, you go and get it. But be ready to take risks and sacrifices, because that takes you faster towards your goals in the long run.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Mungo.fi is a video production company based in Helsinki, Finland. We offer our clients video productions, photography and animations. We focus mainly on story-driven productions with social influence. With storytelling, we are able to make positive changes in the society and the world, and often we get to work with the most amazing people, with amazing stories.
We do also enjoy artistic projects like music videos or short films – actually, Jones is a folk music artist and I make Finnish rap music!
In 2021, we aim to collaborate with marketing agencies, filmmakers and production houses worldwide – personally I would love to get post-production work (editing and color grading) from outside of Finland and network internationally! And with Jones by my side who is a extremely talented animator, we make quite a powerful duo!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Well, that’s a difficult question to answer to – I don’t go out very often! Hmm, of course we would check out our studio in Helsinki first, maybe do a photography session. I love nature, so we would go and take a trip to the forest. If there was no global pandemic, we would go to the cinema in Helsinki, and from there maybe to a bar.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Hmmm, there is a few; Mico a.k.a ÄLLÄ, who was one of the first people to believe in me, and helped me out with starting my career by making Finnish rap videos. Tapio Antere, who was there building Mungo.fi from the ground up, Darren McStay who has been an huge support for years, and of course Joonas Häkkinen, who is an active part of Mungo.fi.