Moscow sketchbook

This is the plane that took us from London to Moscow for the Prince of Persia press junket. It was the nicest plane I’ve ever been on. I felt like Tony Stark for a few hours.

Every fun, relaxing hobby ought to contain an element of danger; for me, drawing people I know at close range is the halfpipe of sketching. When the result is a bad likeness, unflattering or both (which it often is), there’s nowhere to hide. In this case, several of the people on the plane with me were world-famous, so the stage was basically set for a spectacular wipe-out. But I had to try.

The ones of Jerry and Mike Newell (above) are at least more recognizable than some of the others.

None of the ones of Gemma really look like her. Girls are harder to draw than guys to begin with, and the more beautiful they are the harder it is. It often ends up either looking like a generic “pretty girl” or a different girl entirely.

Gemma got her revenge, as you can see from her rendition of me on the right-hand page above.

The press junket, premiere and afterparty were on Tuesday, so I didn’t get to do any sketching that day. Wednesday was our free day; Mike Newell and I began it with a three-hour tour of the Kremlin’s incredible armory.

This was my first visit to Russia, a country I’ve long wanted to visit. At three days, it was much too short.

Posted on May 24, 2010 in Blog, Film, Prince of Persia, Sketchbook | 9 comments

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  1. 5-24-2010

    Mr. Mechner, you’ve inspired me to take up drawing as a hobby like you.

    But, you kind of need to work on your handwriting a little bit (I only say that because I care ;-)

    • 5-24-2010

      What? His handwriting f**king rocks! I’d kill for having such stylish personal typography!

      • 5-24-2010

        It *is* cool, it’s just hard to read easily.

  2. 5-25-2010

    I wish you will visit Russia and Moscow once again. Our journalists complained that they have now time for interview.

  3. 5-25-2010

    I hope you had a ????????????? ??????? (a wonderful trip) to Russia. I should thank you also for your work on The Last Express, and its Russian character Aleksej, because it was actually that incredible game that inspired me to learn Russian in college, and I’ve since spent some time living in St. Petersburg. So ??????? ??????? (great thanks) to you and your creativity!

  4. 5-25-2010

    WOW! That sounds like such an amazing trip, I’m glad you had some free time away from all the hubbub. And I bet that armory was really neat, I have a thing for old weapons, they just have so much personality. Speaking of which, those sketches of antiquities are AWESOME. I absolutely love the chair, medals, and the goblet! What I enjoy so much about your sketchbooks is that it like a diary, I wish I structured mine more like that. With word bubbles and commentary on what’s going on. It makes it that much more personal. And I can’t recall how many times I’ve seen something silly happen and wished I could remember it later. Might just have to take a cue from you and steal it ;P

    PoP comes out this weekend, lots of love and good vibes for the opening. I know I’ll be going :]
    – Kendra

  5. 5-27-2010

    I just want to say… I love the movie so much!!!!
    Saw it today and it was really really good!!

  6. 5-31-2010


    Seeing these exquisite sketches always reminds me of the wonderful time I spent playing “The Last Express”. That was a truly amazing and engrossing game, for me one of the best ever. Are you planning to write and possibly direct a movie adaptation of “The Last Express”? That would surely be an interesting venture. Best luck for your future projects (I’m quite excited with the “Fathom” comics adaptation you’re preparing). Hope you can get back to game design soon, for creative talents like yours are very rare in the gaming world.

  7. 5-31-2010

    Loved your sketches of Moscow! I live here and went to see PoP last weekend with a bunch of friends. They all loved this movie! Hope you get to visit Moscow again and spend a little more time. There’s soooo much more cool stuff in addition to the Kremlin :)

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