•• Update: This VJ clip reward is now part of the Visual Bites VJ pack ••

This month’s VJ clip reward on Patreon is the Totem Pole. Check it out:

Available On Our Patreon Membership

The Totem Pole is a set of 5 VJ clips, in 1080p & 2160p DXV with Alpha transparency. The 1st clip is revealing just parts of the Totem with brief lights. The 2nd clip is the Totem emitting light on the beat. The 3rd is emitting light and rotating 360 degrees. The 4th had the Totem emitting magic particles and the 5th is a flyover over the Totem.     

You also get a Resolume Arena project that has the original clips, then a couple of coloring options, then all kinds of variations and compositing ideas divided into columns. You can also apply a Mask Mode over clips 2 & 4 and reveal parts of them with smart maskings.

The Totem Pole VJ clips will be available on Patreon for the next 3 months only.

Rendered out with Unreal Engine

As with the last Patreon reward and the Arabian Nights VJ Pack, this was rendered with Unreal Engine 5.

In the above screen-cap of Unreal Engine’s UI you can see that I’m using a couple of Point lights for the Totem lighting, and a pulsating emissive material for those awesome, on the beat, Inner glow light-ups (on the left, preview window in Camera view). The way I’m rotating the camera around the Totem is by attaching it to a Camera Rig Crane (center, preview window, top view – in yellow). The camera and rig are placed in a Level Sequence and the Rig’s rotation is keyframed there to create the holy loop (Bottom, Sequencer window)

I’m using UE5’s new Lumen Global Illumination to be able to have those emissive materials emit light and affect the scene without needing to build the lights.

I faced some issues with Lumen (it’s still in early beta), when meshes that are away from the camera’s view not contributing to the scene. Once they enter the camera’s view it takes a couple of frames for them to contribute to the Global Illumination and emit light like they should. This was noticeable in the 5th clip where there’s a flyover over the Totem.

The way I solved it was by moving the camera further away from the mesh (getting more mesh inside the field of view) and rendering a larger resolution (about 15% larger).  This way the mesh parts entered the field of view earlier, started to affect the scene and when they entered my “real” field of view, it already looked great. I then, in post processing (After effects), rendered the clip without the extra 15%  space – and got a perfectly lit 4K resolution clip.

That’s a silly workaround/hack but it worked around this time )) This might be a limitation of Lumen, so I’m about to check NVIDIA’s RTXGI plugin for Unreal Engine 4 – that some say give better results than Lumen (it has it’s drawbacks, too). Check this RTXGI tutorial if you’re curious about it.


I love Unreal Engine and plan to continue mastering it. Creating these Patreon VJ clip rewards each month on a deadline should help me shorten the cycle between idea and finished clips, cut on procrastination time, and perhaps, just perhaps, help me overcome my inclination to over-perfectionism. Keep on amazing them, people! 🤘