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Mastering Lumbar Puncture: 3D art and animation


This animated 3D model and supporting illustrations are part of my final semester project: creating a 3D model of the Lumbar Spine to enhance the pre-course material for Junior Doctors learning Lumbar Puncture as part of the Mastery Learning course. The premise was to create a 3D model of the Lumbar spine, which my client and I decided to  expand to include an animation of the Lumbar Puncture needle and two additional illustrations. This model will be used by Junior Doctors throughout all of Scotland!


3D model and animation: First, the vertebrae were taken from an open source MRI dataset (Bodyparts3D) and cut half in ZBrush. The trabecular bone was created using a ZBrush Alpha created in Photoshop. All other parts were then created from scratch in ZBrush, using appended spheres and cilinders. The model was then painted in ZBrush and exported to Maya. In Maya, a short keyframe animation was created, baked and exported to Sketchfab. The end result can be viewed below! (NB: works best on a computer or tablet due to screen size)

2D illustrations: both illustrations were created in Photoshop, using a range of reference pictures and anatomical atlases. Throughout the whole process, both the model and the illustrations were continually checked by several medical professionals.

Software and skills

Dataset extraction, ZBrush, Maya keyframe animation, Photoshop and InDesign



cross section spine
ecorche spine
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