Last weekend VJ recap (Sonic Beating, Together Festival, TedX Somerville)

Lots of things are rolling into motion from this weekend!

-We are planning to fully announce this soon, but I once again will be creating the Together Festival VJ Competition. Very excited about this and already we have a great team setting up for this unique event. More info to come with this, but I already know this will be a huge event!

-Started working on a project for TedX Somerville, and while it is still in the earliest stages, this may lead to a huge project. Already happy to be working with them!

-This last weekend was a private Sonic Beating party, “Eye Heart Brains”. It was a blast and I got to vj with my copatriot Dj Anya. We had a ball, packed the place and had an most unbelievable time! Some shots of it below.


All in all it was an amazing weekend and the next few months will be chock full of incredible projects and events. With the on rush of warmer weather I can only imagine it will get better and better!

sonic beatings "eye heart brains" with Vj bonk and DJ anya

sonic beatings “eye heart brains” with Vj bonk and DJ anya

sonic beatings "eye heart brains" with Vj bonk and DJ anya

sonic beatings “eye heart brains” with Vj bonk and DJ anya

Visualize Somerville Recap Video

We finally are releasing the recap from Visualize Somerville! This is a product of so much dedication and work from many talented teams of artists.
I came up with this idea almost 2 years ago, and since then it has been a rollercoaster ride of ups and downs. We almost didn’t have it happen….twice!
But becuase of the crew around me and a massive effort at the end, we came together and produced a unique event that I am truly proud of. The documentary team, Above Summit, really came

in and blew it away with the video capture. Time lapse rigs, drones shooting video, and a full crew to capture the moments. I am glad that the art show got some credit too, that was a part I didn’t know

would be so much work! The artists were very helpful and the work they put up was really breathtaking. All I can hope is people had fun and will want to do it again. I got the thumbs up from both venues, who know where we

will go with this now? Check out the video and stay tuned.

Visualize Somerville at BKB and Aeronaut from Above Summit on Vimeo.

Visualize Somerville projection mapping recap

The Visualize Somerville event was BLAST! The projections looked amazing, the art show was a huge hit and it looked like the night went into the history books. We spent quite a good amount of time working with the venues and making everything run so smoothly and we definetely had our ups and downs creating this event. I personally had some hard set backs that only were overcome by some seriously hard work from both the team and myself. In the end though, this created a most magic night. The art show next door, which will have its own photo album, was special as well, more on that in another post. This was a large event, with many hundreds of people coming to climb and just see the walls. I was bowled over by the sheer amount of people there!

So many people showed and I think everyone really enjoyed themselves. Here are but a few of the pictures, and some amazing videos and pictures are coming out later.  I would like to thank everyone that helped create this event, Brooklyn Boulders, Aeronaut Brewery, Above Summit, and all of the Vjs and Djs.

15 years of Elements Boston

…server was down for a bit there, sorry folks.


-Last week played with Siouxside and Positron at Elements, very fun locals night and had a great time mixing some new content.




This week at Elements is big! Elements is Celebrating 15 YEARS of Drum and Bass music. What a time! This also marks 6 years as a resident Vj as well, which bowls me over. 6 years of mastering my craft and countless artists coming through. Both Czargb and I will be playing that night, and I am in the works to make some custom 15 year content just for this historic night! Don’t sleep, come out and get down!

Then Elements founders Crook and Lenore take the reins along with co-resident Fox for the ritual anniversary tag. And did I mention it’s the night of a rare black moon/supermoon? Do try and stay calm. There will be several giveaways, including Zakim Recordings 12″s courtesy of BBD, and as always we will unveil brand new Elements tees!


Whorld is a Vj program made by another Bostonite, Chris Korda. It is a great program that uses sacred geometry to create interesting and sometimes amazing organic images on the screen. To top it off, it can be used with USB controllers (suggested) or even Wiimotes if uses the right parameters. I would explain it more, but he pretty much sums it up on his site:


“Whorld is a free, open-source visualizer for sacred geometry. It uses math to create a seamless animation of mesmerizing psychedelic images. You can VJ with it, make unique digital artwork with it, or sit back and watch it like a screensaver.

Whorld’s visualization is controlled via parameters which can be adjusted manually, or modulated by oscillators. A given setting of the parameters and their oscillators form a patch. You can use the demo patches, or create your own.

Patches can be grouped together in a playlist. You can play patches manually, or Whorld can auto-play them for you. Whorld also includes a crossfader, which allows you to interpolate between two patches (AKA “tweening”).

Whorld is optimized for VJing. All of its functions are available in full-screen mode, via shortcut keys, mouse or trackball, and MIDI controllers. Whorld can be synchronized to music, using tap tempo, or MIDI clocks.”

…nuff said. I plan on using this more now that I have the ability to use it via my Macbook Pro (through Firewire). I really am looking forward to combine this unique program with Grand VJ and MapMapper sometime soon. Watch out, I think the effects will be Amazing. Videos and Pictures to come.

Regarding Content

Content used to be like this.

At this point in my career I have over 200Gb of just content for my VJ work. Most of that content is clips that are ~1-6 seconds long, so that means I have A LOT of them. This content is a modge podge sourced from everywhere, purchased content, found old videos, personal re-edited content, basically anywhere I can find it. We scour the internet, old VHS tapes, and any other place we possibly can find it. Some videos I swear I have no idea where I even got them.

A Vj is just like any musician when it comes to procuring content to use. The frantic search to find great new stuff is constant and never-ending. We are constantly searching for content to use, always. You know you are around a VJ is when you hear them mumble (almost to them selves), “this would be a great clip”. This can happen at anytime, I swear I have said it from anything from watching someone paint to a car accident to a flower in the wind. We always wish we had a video camera (with image stabilization) with us, and no, a cell phone camera is rarely good enough, though we will still try.

While a DJ will search for that perfect beat or drum roll, a Vj will search video for that perfect loop, or image that will wow the crowd or go just right with how the music is right then. Both the DJ and Vj try to lock on to the feeling of the moment. I know many times when something comes on I try to get a clip I know will be just_right and fly through menus to get to it, only to have the DJ switch over to a new song 10 seconds later. Vjing to the beat the DJ lays down can be a mentally straining project, especially if the music is fast and furious.

Djs and VJs are both in one world, but separated by the senses. We focus on different parts of an event, and as much as they are intertwined, on a usual night they rarely inclusive. There are times I swear I didn’t even hear the music, only the next place I would drop perfect clip in. I firmly believe in the saying “a person can either observe or interact, but not both”. Vjs are constantly interacting with the crowd and the DJ/music, and since we have such short clips playing, we rarely get time to breath.

I am especially proud of the video I produce, either from filming or creating on programs like Cinema 4D or Aftereffects.  Creating content is great amount of work, and creating GOOD content is a constant, ever changing process. In the creative process, there is never a “finished product”, just a revision of a revision that is good enough to show what you are trying to convey. Anytime I play some clip I produced and someone comments on it with a “that was great”, I reply almost sheepishly with “well, it’s just a frame work of where I want the clip to be”. I am almost embarrassed about something they would never even understand! But as an artist, this is exactly where I want to be ~Jon Bonk


Copyright Jon Bonk 2016

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