Posted 12 July 2023
Interview by Frankie Faccion
Mention Veronica Petukhov

3D visuals, net art and DJ sets: Inside the world of digital artist and VJ Veronica Petukhov

If you’ve ever wondered who creates the visuals for DJ sets, meet Veronica Petukhov. Over the past few years, she’s built an impressive creative career after teaching herself software such as Blender 3D and Resolme to create glitchy, net art influenced videos and artworks for DJs, musicians and artists. Having paired up with Samm Anga to become audiovisual duo mutomajor, Edinburgh-based Veronica has done everything from performing onstage at Sonica Festival, to crafting augmented reality works for an artist residency. Here, she speaks to us about grappling with gender inequality in the music industry and how having an affinity with software and computers is essential when producing digital art.

Veronica Petukhov

Veronica Petukhov

Job Title

Freelance digital artist and VJ



Place of Study

Gray's School of Art, BA Hons Contemporary Art Practice (2017-2021)

Selected clients

Cultivate Festival, Pulse, EPiKA, Plant Bass'd, Edinburgh Disco Lovers.

LGBTQI+ event PowerPot, showcasing minorities in the electronic music industry.

Previous Employment



Social Media



What I do

How would you describe what you do as a digital artist and VJ?
As a digital artist and video jockey [VJ], I work between my home office and nightclubs or event venues. All the preparation takes place at home by myself. I use a variety of programs like TouchDesigner, Blender 3D, Resolume, Magic Music Visualizer, and Adobe Creative Suite.

I move between programs to create the outcome that I desire: be it a video work, a digital art piece or a poster. I also freelance as a poster designer for events, and sometimes I do logos and promotional video clips. But the common factor is always electronic music. I work with a variety of creatives like producers, DJs, musicians and artists.

Making visuals has led to performing at exhibitions and art events like Sonica Music Festival in Glasgow, where my work becomes a more in depth exploration of music and video art in symbiosis.

“As a digital artist and VJ, I work with a variety of producers, DJs, musicians and artists to create video works, digital art or posters for events.”

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Veronica’s live visuals behind EYVE’s performance during Cryptic Nights event in Glasgow, photography by Siyao Li

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What are the main influences and inspirations behind your work?
Net art, digital art, chrometype, 3D art and glitch art. I am also inspired by y2k fashion, dystopian futures, technology and my own heritage.

Can you tell us about some of your favourite projects to date?

One is HERETIK, a performance at Sonica Festival (organised by Cryptic Glasgow), where I performed as the audiovisual duo mutomajor with Samm Anga. I had never performed on a stage of that scale, and it took a lot of time to prepare. It felt like the biggest project to date – it pushed my limits and taught me how to be on stage, as previously I had only worked behind the scenes. It was great to feel the spotlight and transmit a message through our artwork to the audience.

mutomajor (Samm Anga and Veronica Petukhov) with bespoke outfits created for their show “HERETIK” performed at Sonica festival. Photography by Abby Beatrice Quick. Textile design by Eleanor Macdonald.

Another was, a month-long digital residency alongside Samm Anga, for Agora Digital Art. This was a collaborative residency completed during the pandemic which meant we had to work with what we had at home, creating digital pieces with augmented reality so viewers could experience it as if they were in a gallery. It was definitely interesting, but I don’t miss the infinite zoom calls.

Oracolo was my final university project for the Virtual Degree Show (I graduated during the pandemic). I put months into creating a 3D world with an augmented reality experience for the viewers. The project revolved around my dissertation on selfie dysmorphia, online persona and filters. I created an experience where viewers could engage from their homes by applying AR filters on my digital works. You can still walk around the 3D environment here, and see the digital pieces here.

How I got here

Would you say you need any specific training for what you do?
I think it’s possible to learn as you go – that’s what I did. A lot of tutorials, trial and error, pushing myself. I would recommend having a basic knowledge of digital creative programs like Adobe Photoshop and Premiere Pro, knowing that will aid with learning more complicated programs like Blender, Resolume and TouchDesigner. Having an affinity with programs and computers is definitely essential if you’re looking for a career that revolves around digital art.

“Having an affinity with programs and computers is definitely essential if you’re looking for a career that revolves around digital art.”

Screenshot of Veronica’s video piece ‘La Grande Bellezza’, created for the digital exhibition Subterranean Virtualscapes showcased at Virginia Bianchi Gallery. (Created in Blender and Adobe Premiere Pro)

What was your journey like when you were first starting out?
I started out a couple of months before the pandemic started. I had the opportunity to VJ a couple of times and then lockdown happened. On the one hand, it really helped my career and art practice as being stuck at home meant I could spend hours on my computer learning, trying and practising my craft. On the other hand, it was more difficult as I couldn’t apply my skills to the “real world”.

But nonetheless, I started posting my works online and getting contacted more and more by clients (DJs and producers). A lot of people were doing live streams or wanted music videos, and I loved doing that. Most of my lockdown jobs were either done for free or in collaboration with others, as many were financially struggling. I accepted nearly everything to build a career and a portfolio.

I do thank lockdown because it did help get my name out in the space. After it ended, I started getting more commissions and being booked to VJ in clubs.

“I find aesthetic inspiration mainly from Instagram with accounts like Cybrmagazine and 6TM Magazine.”

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Miscellaneous poster designs by Veronica for events and club nights

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If you could pick three things that you’ve found useful or inspiring to your work or career, what would they be and why?
I find aesthetic inspiration mainly from Instagram with accounts like Cybrmagazine and 6TM Magazine.

Also, I love looking at art exhibitions organised by Hervisions. They are truly inspirational and beautiful.

What would you say has been your biggest challenge along the way?
Trying to establish yourself in the world of electronic music and digital art is a challenge in itself. I have definitely found a lot of difficulty finding support in university. Also, it’s tough to have to prove my worth to promoters, and clients will often end up choosing men to do the job. There is a massive gender inequality in the music industry.

The biggest challenge is also to know how much your work is worth. A lot of the time I put myself down and ask for a lesser payment so I don’t lose a client. The key is to find a balance in this, even if you’re just starting out.

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Still from Cultivate Festival, performance of DJ Ross From Friends with Veronica’s live VJ set

“It’s tough to have to prove my worth to clients that will often end up choosing men to do the job instead.”

How important would you say social media and self-promotion are to your work? Do you have any advice or learnings to share?
I think social media and self-promotion are crucial, and a necessity for freelancers and digital artists. As much as I wish we didn’t need it, it is a vital part of this career path (and other careers). Social media, especially Instagram, is how I get 90% of my commissions and work. Sharing posts and stories of my latest work often makes them visible to my viewers, as many will re-share my posts to their stories, making it more likely to be discovered by potential clients. I also engage in networking and try to promote myself when I meet new people at events and parties. It doesn't hurt anybody.

What have been your greatest learnings with making money and supporting yourself as a creative?
When I started getting more commissions, I was still finishing university. The commissions were not enough for me to pay rent and bills, so I always supported myself by working in hospitality. It was very tough and tiring, it burnt me out mentally and physically. I recommend looking into financial support and funding for artists. I applied to as many open calls and funding opportunities as I could, I got some and it really helped me in the end.

If anyone is in Scotland like me, I recommend Creative Scotland.

My advice

What’s the best career-related advice you’ve ever received?
Believe in yourself and your work. Don’t be ashamed to speak about yourself and what you do. Be proud of your work and don’t get upset if you don't find work for some time, keep pushing hard and don’t give up. Also, don’t be shy about asking for help and advice from others.

What advice would you give someone looking to get into a similar career?
As someone who is self taught, I would recommend watching YouTube tutorials, keeping up to date with other artists' art, reading books related to the topic, following accounts that share the type of art you're interested in. I also found it very helpful to go to exhibition openings, art festivals and events to meet artists and talk to them.

Interview by Frankie Faccion
Mention Veronica Petukhov