Nat Geo’s Finding the Origins of Life

Uncovering the Origins of Life with 3D Animation

I had the chance to work on the National Geographic Channel's television series Naked Science and created the medical animation for their show, Finding the Origins of Life. Replicating DNA, primordial soups, theories of life's evolution, and the synthetic requirements to create life in a laboratory are topics covered in this show. What a project! 


The project came to me after have been passed through the hands of a different animation studio that struggled at understanding DNA replication. Production of the animations was behind schedule and in need of a new vendor that could execute. That's where we came into play. Over the course of 4 months our team of medical animators and motion graphic artists put together over 3 minutes of custom medical and scientific animations that brought to life ideas about primordial life, DNA replication and the role mRNA.

3D Animation Showreel

How did life on Earth begin? And why here? Some believe it arrived on an extraterrestrial meteorite. Others claim it began in a warm pond on early Earth. Or could volcanoes and lightning have sparked early life? Now, research teams are racing to understand how life may have begun - by creating it themselves. Watch as a scientist mixes up a batch of primordial soup and then zaps it with a bolt of electricity, a la Dr. Frankenstein. The results: amino acids, the building blocks of all life.

National Geographic Channel Television Show Preview

You can watch more of the program on the National Geographic Channel's website. Below is a small excerpt from the show.

Many of the shots for this project involved molecules performing complex movements and interactions, all based on known behaviors. Below are some animation tests and selected shots from the development process.

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