Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Sands of Time



Concept art for Prince of Persia
I had done several illustrations for the King's funeral but this is my favorite in terms of scale and atmosphere. It was done in a very early stage of production and I wish I would have had more reference then for the final costume designs.

The 'City of Alamut' was my first task when I arrived in Marrakech. The design was based on original Indian architecture and then extended into a fantastic superstructure. We designed the city on different levels, from poor to more wealthy areas up to the palaces on top, cascading into a massive tower reaching into the clouds. Finding a good measure between fantasy and history was the main concern of the production designer. Which wasn't that easy because the story was set in a period that can only be researched by paintings, scrolls and hieroglyphics...



...until I got my hands on a book called 'Orientalists', containing more than 300 of the finest paintings of the genre. Most of them created by artists of the nineteenth-century - some of them I hadn't even heard of until that day - it soon became my bible and main source of inspiration. The book ran out of print years ago but a few copies are still around for horrendous prices starting from $1,699 at Amazon.

Temple of Water
The cave was entirely built on stage and designed around the stunt-fighting taking place in there. Hundreds of miles away from Morocco the set was build in London but had to tangentially match the exterior shots in Oukaimden. This and more illustrations of my fellow artists can be found in the book 'Behind the Scenes of Prince of Persia' from Disney Publishing.

11 comments:

Anders said...

the city is simply awesome, but I really dig the cave.
this is just excellent!
bravo

Fabio D'Auria said...

Peter!
is so long that I don't watch your blog, these works are fantastic!
You work in pencil on paper and then paint in painter (or Photoshop) or directly in digital?

Peter said...

Fabio, welcome back!
No pencil, no paper. Pure pixels and photoshop only. But lately I've been back to the drawing board more often. Feels so much better when scribbling. But no way I am going to touch real paint and brushes again ;-)

Mariusz Kornatka said...

Great work. I don't see the movie yet, but I will =)

-
all the best,
Mariusz

www.mariuszkornatka.posterous.com

craig said...

really excellent work Peter. The clarity of these pieces with the level of information is great

Mohammad.Modarres said...

nice design ,but for some one who is Persian and know the design and craft of the Persia it's not acceptable to saw a film or videogames based on orientalism paintings,since it's not persian at all.i wonder why western media always wanted to illustrated persia at this fashion?:)just check this post it's worth of reading :)
http://dev.garshasp.ir/blog/archives/200

Marcos Mateu said...

These are great! the big epic shot at the top is awesome!

BROCASSO said...

Man this stuff is amazing!

Every time you do a film you out do yourself.

I've been swamped but i promise I'll drop some new stuff by Friday.

So what's up with your comic man I've patiently been waiting?

Andre said...

Hi Peter!

Well, from what I´ve seen, it appears there won´t be an "Art from Prince of Persia:The Sands of Time"...
=(

Can you confirm this, please?

I´ve checked out Parka´s blog review of "We Make Our Own Destiny: Behind the Scenes of Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time" and I´m kinda of worried about how much concept art the book has. But I guess it´s the best way to look at the concept art from the movie, which is quite a visual spectacle

Peter said...

@Mohammad.Modarres: thank you for your comment and posting the link to Garshasp. I was referring to the Orientalists book more in terms of painting style then architectural reference. I agree with you that the European view of the Eastern World was based more on romantic perceptions than reality.

@Marcos Mateu: thank you, Marcos, I can't wait to see your new book published…

@BROCASSO: I heard you've been very busy…well, good for you. Updates? I'll be watching you…

@Andre: All I know is that there is an "Art of Prince of Persia" announced on German Amazon. (link) I wouldn't recommend the other book if you are looking for concept art, for there are only very few published. I'll keep you posted as soon as I know more.

Richard Smitheman said...

These are really incredible. Great work.