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  • Frank Anderson

3D Brain Animation for Broadcast

Your Fantastic Mind on Georgia Public Broadcasting


I'm proud to announce the release of a new show I worked on called Your Fantastic Mind. It's a new documentary series about all sorts of things involving the brain including pioneering research, rare brain conditions, and ways to keep your brain healthy.


For this project I was mostly responsible for animating the 3D brain. We purchased the brain model from Zygote. Apparently the whole thing was recreated from a cadaver so it's about as accurate as you can get.


Once we got it, it was prepped for use with Element 3D in Maya.


A cool thing that has helped me a lot when working on this show is that I'll often be told to highlight parts of the brain that I've never heard of (I'm no neuroscientist), but the people at Zygote have labeled every part of the brain's anatomy in model itself so I can quickly find what needs to be highlighted in most cases.


Brain graphic depicting part of the motor circuit -Courtesy of GPB Media

Once I got the model into After Effects, I needed to build a template that could be passed between different designers. Due to some issues with relinking Element 3D models we had to nix that idea an I ended up just doing all the brain animations.


3D Brain in After Effects

Our goal was to not bog down the show with too much science and technical terms and keep the story focused on the people. So, we try to keep it pretty simple when we're showing parts of the brain.


Make sure you check our Your Fantastic Mind available now.