Nominated for three Emmy awards; production, animation, and editing, this program represents the wide array of production services Pixeldust has to offer. Produced for CuriosityStream, Ancient Oceans dives deep into prehistory and explores the flourishing depths of Earth’s ancient oceans. We discover wild, wondrous creatures and the most monstrous predators that roamed the planet. While the continents remained a lifeless wasteland for nearly 4 billion years, the seas were teeming with life. A story of life, death and life re-born, the team visualized this complex underwater world through a captivating series of CGI-animated sequences.

Director: Ricardo Andrade
Production: Elizabeth Andrade, Chad Cohen
CG Supervisor: Samar Shool
Senior Animator: Roland Womack
Lead Creature Animator: Andy Hencken
Animator: Jordan Chedalavada, Jason Starbird-Tierney
Editor: Mark Andrade, Rico Andrade

CREATIVE APPROACH

The team aimed to deliver an immersive series that would transport the viewer to the fascinating time where bizarre life flourished in the shallows of the ocean, and gigantic sea monsters ruled. Pixeldust put this world on display through an approach utilizing long camera movements which float the camera through these immersive 3D environments, taking the viewer on a tour through this unfamiliar, yet unforgettable world.

animation and original content production
Visual representation of Gondwana through 3D animation and CGI
Original content production and 3D animation
TV series production

THE TECHNOLOGY

To deliver this 4K series, Pixeldust used an innovative pipeline which boasted a lightning-fast Real-Time rendering GPU pipeline utilizing Unity HDRP, Unreal Engine, and RTX technology. This allowed over 80% of the CG shots to be completed, including shading lighting, and compositing in 4k – from start to finish in a single machine. This marked a key milestone for Pixeldust, as it allows the studio to take an animation from concept to completion faster than ever before.

Drag the button at the center of the images to reveal an image’s wireframe, and it’s final rendered version.

Ancient Oceans, Original Content Production3D animation of a snail
Wireframe of a 3D animationAnimation and Original Content Production

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