IF: Can you start off by telling us a little about your background and how you first became interested in the world of VJing?
MD: I studied 2D animation at the HKU (Utrecht University of the Arts), where we mostly worked on making short films. I liked it, but I kind of struggled with the format of a narrative short film. I never really knew how to express my ideas in 2 minutes, or my concepts ended up being too big or too abstract. So the second half of my studies I started looking for a way of creating visual arts that felt less rational and more intuitive to me. That lead me to combining animation with music, because simply listening to a song has always created an infinite flow of visuals in my mind. That same time I went to an EDM festival in the Netherlands, where I got a bit of an idea of what most VJing was like. Then It felt like I just had to try it!
IF: How would you describe VJing for someone that perhaps has never heard the term? (Maybe imagine trying to explain your art to your 45 year-old Uncle who works at the Post Office)
MD: I’ve had to explain this quite a bit to my actual uncles and aunts, but I think I told them something like ‘working at concerts and using small clips of video and trigger and mix them to the music that is playing, which the audience can see on the screens’. I’m often a bit cautious with saying the visuals are there to complement or amplify the music, as I think in the ideal world those two strengthen each other equally.
IF: It seems that VJing is most often associated with DJing, particularly in the EDM world. What are your thoughts regarding this seemingly inevitable connection?
MD: I guess that makes sense, as the biggest VJ scene is probably still in EDM, but I think it’s starting to get bigger in other genres as well.
IF: Are you interested in working with DJ’s at all? Do you feel there is a strong difference between working with a DJ versus a band? (Particularly regarding the crowd and how they view / interact with with the visuals)
MD: I’d love to work with DJ’s! I think working with my band was actually quite similar to working with a DJ, as the focus wasn’t so much on the performance of the musicians. When working with a band there’s usually someone very charismatic up on the stage, or the dynamic between the musicians to look at. With a DJ you can create much more than just a ‘visual backdrop’, because you’ll have a lot more of the audience’s attention.