Got questions? Cool, I've got answers. :)
Who are you?
I'm a guy from Seattle that likes to take pictures of interesting things. I have a wife, a kid, and a cat, all of whom sometimes make it into my pictures. I also like to travel. You can read all about me here!
How do I find you on social media?
- Follow me on Facebook
- Follow me on Instagram @jmongol
- Follow me on 500px @jmongol
- Follow me on Twitter @jmongol
- Follow me on Flickr
What camera gear do you use?
I use a bunch of different equipment, but my primary camera of choice is a Canon 6d. I chose this camera for its low-light capabilities, size, and general all-around performance. I've got a gear list if you're interested in that sort of thing too.
Can you recommend a camera for me?
Generally no. Cameras are a very personal purchase, and your needs are probably different from mine. I really encourage you to first play with what you have and exhaust all of its possibilities. Then, if you are thinking about buying something new, research a couple of choices and rent the bodies/lenses you are interested in. There are a bunch of places to rent in your local area, or online too. It's a great way to try new gear before you buy!
Can you teach me how to take night sky pictures?
Do you do weddings/engagement sessions/portraits?
I generally don't do traditional portrait sessions, but it never hurts to ask. I do offer portraits under the stars if you'd like to have something unique! Unfortunately I don't do weddings or engagement sessions at this time.
I'm going to be in Seattle. Can we go shoot?
Schedule permitting, I'm always willing to shoot with other like-minded creative types! I have a busy schedule but don't hesitate to ask to see what I'm up to. Please note that I don't do instruction outside of my one-on-one instruction sessions - when we shoot together, I like to get as much shooting in as you, whereas when I teach my focus is entirely on you and I don't shoot except to demo something for you.
Do you need an intern/assistant?
That depends. Are you're willing to hike long distances in the dark and carry the beer?
This shot is amazing - how did you do it?
A lot goes into many of the shots you see here, more than you might expect. I sometimes blog about how shots are made, but I sometimes choose not to reveal the entire process in order to preserve a bit of the mystery. A good magician doesn't reveal his secrets, right? :)
Do you composite your night sky shots?
I consider composites to be one or more photos taken at wildly different times/places combined into one shot. For example, the Milky Way from Eastern Washington and the Seattle skyline. I never do this as I don't prefer the look, and also want to represent the beauty that nature offers as it appears to me.
I sometimes will combine shots taken on the same night at the same location, but at different times. For example, a shot of the landscape at sunset and the stars later in the evening. I don't consider this to be a composite as I often do this in order to preserve foreground detail (particularly during a new moon), and always go for as natural of an edit as possible. Sometimes this is done for technical reasons as well.
I also use a star tracking mount for some of my shots in order to obtain the best quality, colors, and contrast in the night sky. If the image contains a landscape, the tracking mount will blur the landscape, which means I'll wind up taking another shot with the mount off and blending the sky with the landscape. I always aim to reproduce the scene as I see it.
Do you sell prints?
Yep! I offer a curated selection of ready to go prints at reasonable prices, shipped to your door. All prints come signed, and all prints come unframed, ready for you to frame yourself or take to a framer to custom frame.
If you don't see something you want, or you want a custom mount, I can make you a custom print of nearly anything in my portfolio. Learn more about custom prints.
Are your prints limited or open editions?
Unless otherwise noted, all prints are limited editions of 25. A limited edition means that only 25 prints of that image - in any size and format - will ever be made. Once a print is sold out, I will no longer make additional prints of that image. This helps protect your investment over time.
Will ready-made prints come exactly in the size listed? Will the image be cropped?
Prints will arrive as the size ordered. For instance, if you order an 18x12 inch print, your print will be 18x12 inches. All ready-made prints are full bleed (the print comes to the edge of the paper).
Some images need to be cropped slightly to fit the print format. I always work with my printer to ensure the crop produces the best look. If you absolutely do not want a crop, please get in touch to discuss a custom print job.
Why do the descriptions on some ready-made prints say they are a non-standard size?
I produce some images in a wide format that I think adds a really cool look to certain scenes. Although they cost quite a bit more to make, they look amazing! Because of the wide format, these images print at approximately a 3:1 aspect ratio, which is not a common standard frame size. You may need to have a framer design a custom frame for these pieces.
Do you do prints on metal? Acrylic?
Yes, and they look incredible! Metal prints are my favorite and offer a clean, modern look. As an added bonus, no framing is required as the prints themselves stand off of the wall about 1/4".
I don't offer metal or arcylic prints through the shopping cart on my web site as I like to work with you to ensure the print is the right fit for your home. These prints are unique, and selecting the right size and mount isn't something that's best done impersonally. Working together will ensure that you love it when it arrives!
I live in Seattle, can I pick up a print instead of having it shipped?
It depends. Send me a note to ask about this before you order.
Do you do commercial work?
I do! Learn more about what I offer.
Who inspires you?
Lots of folks inspire me - I follow tons of awesome people on social media and am always amazed by what people create! Some people that I really make a point to follow include (in order by last name) Dave Brosha, Mark Gee, Jimmy McIntyre, Ian Plant, Michael Shainblum, and Paul Zizka but there are many more!