Made in the mountains of Queenstown, New Zealand, Machine Elf builds unique visual and audio content to help expand consciousness around the world. The works themselves stand alone as individual art pieces with an eclectic mix of visuals and soundscapes. After the math and music composing is complete, they can be rendered in anything from 4K to 8K to 16K to Stereoscopic 360 VR and beyond. Installations include anything from fine art to projections to music festivals to 360 virtual reality.

The best way to experience these is via VR goggles using Inside that app, you can see a variety of Machine Elf experiences and use them as daily tools for your mind; they are a beautiful meditation that settles your conciousness to leave you refreshed and serene.


Sign up for now to get the latest Machine Elf creations.


Machine Elf Events

Machine Elf creations are licensable around the world for (virtual and online) festivals and raves. They come in different BPM formats to match almost any music style.

Below are a few examples of some Machine Elf creations. Naturally, when visiting via a web browser, these will be 2D experiences, but they are still pretty awesome. Enjoy.


We Are Made From Stars

Welcome to a very different Machine Elf creation! All my latest ones seem to be my favorite, but this one definitely gives a new perspective on the cinematic quality and storytelling of fractals. This creation was incredibly complex and took about a month for the visuals and another month for the music from Joshua Ryan. We’ve been collaborating on this one forever and now it is finally ready for release!

This creation explores how incredible complexity and the fabric of the universe could possibly be boiled down to a few combined fractal equations. I’ve always been fascinated by the fabric of the reality around us. Maybe it’s just math, or a higher order of mathematical formulas that collide with different sorts of energies. It’s really hard to say, eh? All these Machine Elf creations explore different facets from the same jewel of the reality that is being built around us all the time.


The Conciousness of Appearing

Sometimes when I get bored, I listen to all sorts of podcasts about the nature of reality. It's also been influenced a lot by my morning meditations with the Sam Harris Waking Up app. Once you start to just notice things appearing in your sensorium, it can be quite the spectacle. So I started working on this fractal based on a more organic formula to explore this idea further. The music I coupled it with is also a favorite that was introduced to me by a shaman in LA and it's called "Devi Prayer" by Craig Preuss & Ananda. Enjoy the journey! 🙂


Floral Quartz

Ready for a juicy new organic Machine Elf? Sure you are! This one is another creation that includes custom music from ‘Sam Wave’ which you are sure to enjoy. The idea for this one came to me from a colourful meditation where I did a deep dive into an oil painting with infinite recursion that folds, unfolds, paints, and unpaints its way into a visual meditation. When Sam started making the soundtrack he mentioned that “it feels like a flower internalising its underwater getaway... a floral quartz. We hope you enjoy.

Watch in 360 VR on


Master Owl

The owl knows everything and is often the one who allows you to see it.
Graced by the owls presence, Machine Elf 34 takes us on an unpredictable adventure that delves inside the alien mind to see what hides within. This is our most mathematically complex fractal so far and is a combination of the Xenodreambuie in a hybrid with Atan2Power 2. As with all the others, watch in full screen with the volume up and allow yourself to fall away into the world.

Watch in 360 VR on


Avoiding the Void

What is the void? Do we want to avoid it or embrace it? We know the void is a useful tool for learning, so how do we dance with it? Elf 27 calmly explores the evolution of a void and allows you to relax in the unraveling, fundamental nature of its creation. As with the last one, Sam Mehrtens (Sam Wave) did custom music.

He explains "with all these worlds there seems to be a pulsing balance of life and release. When I was making the soundtrack I was instantly drawn into the void and felt a passive tribal tone urging to come out... as the void unravels so does the sound, and the beat becomes a distant memory. Accompanied by sprays of tonal delay and psychedelic guitar, 'Avoiding the Void' is our most explorative creation yet."

Watch in 360 VR on


Creator of Worlds

"Creator of Worlds" explores chaos and order and creation from nothing. The visual art consists of mathematical fractals that are changing, growing, and being destroyed over time and then recreated from the void. This is a collaboration with composer Sam Mehrtens (Sam Wave) we started with the concept of a heartbeat - the heartbeat of a mother that an infant hears in the womb. The work demonstrates life at all stages and throughout the course of its journey has the influence of both masculine and feminine energy guiding the entities evolution.

For us, this work at times reminded us of coral and represented life before personified life. It allows the participant to let go of thoughts and enter a more calm reality. This is the first work in the series made by Trey and Sam.

Watch in 360 VR on

Machine Elf Review - Washington Post Quote

Talking Machine Elf on TWIP


People seem to love the Machine Elf creations so much that we continue to experiment with different fractals and music ideas. Consider all of these below to be "drafts" that could become future official creations with original custom music from Sam Wave. Sometimes people enjoy seeing what lands on the cutting room floor.


The Pineal DMT


String Theory






The Hive


Inside the Coronavirus Molecule


Open Heart


Devs Cube


Crystal Mind


Cellular Dystopia


To see the Machine Elf creations in 360 check out the playlist below or click here to view it on YouTube. Available in resolutions up to 8K you can grab the screen with your mouse and spin the camera round to look wherever you wish. To experience these in an even more immersive form, check out the VR app, TRIPP.


"Thank you from the bottom of the anxious part of my heart. So soothing, calming, serene, whole, healing, breathing, beautiful. I wish I had more words to describe how much this affected my emotional state."
- Kay Perret
"Wow. Headset VR on. Wow"
- Ellie Sambrook
"This stuff is truly messing with my consciousness - is it a representation of some reality that I don’t perceive because of my limited human perception, or is it a portion of the actual cosmos? Could I perceive this in some state of consciousness, or is this only a reality subset visibly created in computer AI, which is actually a subset in my consciousness? I am part of a fractal? I am part of a simulation running in the universe? This is massive to ponder! Could send me into a reflexive infinite loop!"
- David Johnston
"An electrifying display of color and imagination. Well done."
- Betty A.
"This might be the most beautiful thing I've ever seen!"
- someone with 50% of the DNA of Patrick Rothfuss.


Machine Elf was started in mountains of New Zealand by two artists, Trey Ratcliff and Sam Wave. We believe in bringing consciousness and love to the world through art and creativity. Read more about the founders below.



Here's a photo of Sam & Trey at some music festival. We don't have any recollection of this photo being taken.



Trey Ratcliff is an artist on a somewhat quixotic mission to help spread consciousness and mindfulness to the world through photography and creativity. Running the #1 travel photography blog in the world,, has taken him to all seven continents over the past decade, and Google has tracked more than 140 billion views of his photos, all while building a social media presence with over 5 million followers.

Chris Anderson from TED called him a “pioneer” of the now ubiquitous genre of High Dynamic Range photography. Ratcliff had the first HDR photograph to hang in the Smithsonian Museum and, sales of his large-format limited edition prints to fine art collectors worldwide have grown into a multimillion-dollar business. In 2012, he moved to Queenstown, New Zealand, before it became a trendy doomsday contingency plan.

Trey has collectors of his fine art from all around the world. These include everyone from knights to professional football players to celebrities like Edward Norton and Leonardo DiCaprio.

Here is a link to Trey's Media Kit to find out more.



Sam Wave is the moniker of Sam Mehrtens, singer/song-writer/producer/multi-instrumentalist/mixer/filmmaker and performer. Based in the hills of Arrowtown New Zealand he has been writing and making music for years and recently released 'Rhetorical What', his debut album.

The album challenges the norms of the Pop genre and features multiple artists from across the globe (Canada and Europe) and closer to home such as Sam's younger brother and frontman of Mild Orange, Josh Mehrtens.

Sam Wave and his full band can be caught live in 2020, Coronavirus permitting and in the meantime you can listen to more of his work on Spotify.


Stu Davidson

Tech Guy

Stu Bio

After university Stu joined the Royal Bank of Scotland/NatWest Group working on the development of their early internet banking/ecommerce platforms as well as the migration of NatWest systems to the RBS IT infrastructure; at the time one of the largest integreation projects ever undertaken worldwide. He then moved into technology journalism, taking from a hobby site to a leading publication with millions of monthly visitors and excellent working relationships with brands including Intel, AMD and NVIDIA.

Leaving his role as Editor in Chief in 2016 he began working full time in Trey's creative empire. In his current incarnation he can be found dealing with all things tech in the Machine Elf world... render farm management, music licensing, data wrangling, website design, social media admin and a sprinkle of After Effects/Premiere Pro work are all on his regular to-do list. When not staring at a screen you'll find him in the hills and glens of Scotland with his quadcopter or following Rangers F.C.

Advisory Board

Machine Elf Advisory Board

Hans Zimmer: Oscar, Grammy and Golden Globe winning film score composer and record producer. (The Lion King, Gladiator, the Pirates of the Caribbean series, The Dark Knight Trilogy, Inception, Interstellar, Dunkirk, Man of Steel, Planet Earth II and Blade Runner 2049 to name a few.)

Naval Ravikant: Entrepreneur, angel investor and podcast host. Co-founder, chairman and former CEO of AngelList. Invested early-stage in over 200 companies including Uber, Twitter, Clubhouse and FourSquare.

Tim Chang: Tim co-leads Mayfield’s Consumer investment practice and is an experienced investor and global executive. He has been twice named to the Forbes Midas list of Top Tech Investors.

Adam Gazzaley, M.D., PH.D. : Founder & Executive Director - Neuroscape. Professor - Neurology, Physiology and Psychiatry at University of California, San Francisco (UCSF).

Matt Mullenweg: Founder of WordPress, CEO and Founder of Automattic.

Jason Silva: Television personality, filmmaker, futurist, philosopher, and public speaker. Known for hosting National Geographic documentaries: Brain Games and Origins. His goal is to use technology to excite people about philosophy and science.

Get in touch.

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