#CHARLES!

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Creative Director and visual effects magician Charles Darby has worked on some of the largest film productions of all times (or how about Titanic, The Fifth Element, and The Matrix?) and is currently perfecting the visual experience of a highly anticipated production premiering next year through his production company NoSuchThing.

An Emmy-awarded film veteran and classically trained artist, Charles is also a complete Rome aficionado, falling in love with the city he now permanently resides in during the on set productions of HBO’s success series ROME, filmed at the legendary Cinecittà Studios.

Words are naturally not enough to express our gratitude towards this British gentleman for having the will and finding the time to create some absolutely stunning Rome watercolors to decorate our precious homepage.

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We are thrilled to dedicate this first Journal Questionnaire to you, Charlie!

Share a Roman secret of yours?

Walk slowly.  It’s that simple.  Stay cool in the heat and admire the worlds most beautiful city without getting all hot and bothered. 

Which talent would you most like to have?

I’d love to play the Piano. To be able to play a beautiful melody would be wonderful. I have a sudden desire for a piano. And lessons.

What’s your favorite Italian destination?

Positano. Though it’s very popular with tourists, I simply adore it. I find a peace there that I seldom find elsewhere.

What’s your top-pick Roman dish? And top-pick restaurant in the Capital?

I love simple food. Like all simple things though, it has to be fresh and perfectly prepared. I very much like to the fresh Tortelloni  at Nino’s. It’s very old school, waiters in white jackets and brisk professional service. Once in while, too brisk but the food keeps me coming back.

Which living person do you most admire?

Stephen Fry.  A modern day Oscar Wilde.

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Very cold milk at night, with a chocolate chip cookie. Makes me feel like I’m 7 years old.  I have a sudden desire for a cookie.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Peace, happiness, health and simplicity. A sense of calm, no matter where I am. Easier said than done.

Favorite place and moment of day in Rome?

The end of the day. The last of the sun’s rays hitting the tops of the buildings. Sometimes I sit at the cafe Rosati (in Piazza di Popolo) and look up at the view of the Borghese Park’s ‘Pincio’ as the sun bathes it in a warm glow. Church bells ringing in the background. I always feel lucky to live in Rome during such moments.

What is your best-loved Italian art work all times?

Like music, it’s all about mood. I love many Italian works and study them for years, but to make something truly special one needs to see something personal within it. My son is only 5 years old but he adores Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s elephant in Piazza Minerva, so to see his face light up on seeing the elephant makes it my favourite. It’s not big or truly impressive compared to so many wonderful works of art, but its quite wonderful in its own small way.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

My son, and learning to be flexible in life….even that he taught me.

What is your motto?

‘Later is sooner than you think’. Courtesy of Woody Allen.