along with the website i decided to start this blog and use it to offer insights into the creation process of the soon to be released models.
This is something i deem interesting to explain, because often i see a model from another brand and i wonder how it was created, if a background was written etc.
Personally i try to write a good story before starting the process of planning the visual appearance of a character: the story itself will decide their clothing, body language and items they wear.
Usually, what i write arises from personal experiences: dreams, sensations, feelings. But sometimes i took inspiration from other people’s lives.
In the “About” section of the website i specifically mention dreams and obsessions: this is because i decided that the first line of miniatures would have shared a setting called “The Ambered World” and inspired by a dream i made many, many years ago, taking place at sunset and in a world completely tinted by amber and orange colors.
It was a sad dream, which somehow had a strong impact on me for the years to come.
Thus, indeed Indaco Models is a project born from the obsession: a way to merge my passion for miniatures with the visions and dreams that bittersweetly visited me (and still do) during my life.
Back to the miniatures: another decision was to set the first line in the Renaissance era, specifically because i love that age’s costumes.
The first character would have been one of the gloomy and scary beings living in my chidlhood’s fantasies: horned, wearing a robe, someone not strictly evil but still disturbing.
Exactly like i consider my dreams: scary and pleasant at the same time.
The background revolved around a person so angry at the injustices of the world that he was able, through mysterious means, to evolve his mind and obtain powers so great that he was finally able to face what he considered the greatest enemy of his time: the Church!
He would have been the central character of this saga, the one creating a connection between the Ambered World and ours. The First Dreamer.
I must admit, at the time i was still unsure about how it should have looked like, so i browsed around the web for inspiration, and in particular there was this picture from Deviantart that caught my interest:
Its name is “Kou Print” by Olia Pishchanska.
I fell in love with the photograph’s mysterious mood. What are those figures doing in the woods?
Are they some sort of evil cultists, or instead good people attuned with nature in the middle of a ceremony?
Maybe this is a funeral march held during a cloudy day, or an important rite of passage where members of their clan wears hallowed animal skull and a feast will be held at the end?
I think what’s fascinating about the picture is that everyone could interpret it in their own way.
After everything was ready i contacted an artist for creating a visual concept, but unfortunately that step went very wrong: the character lacked charisma and it felt somehow disconnected from his background.I won’t wash dirty laundry in public, and i take responsibility in saying that part of this failure was due to my inexperience in providing accurate directions, but i was very unhappy by the artist’s behavior and decided for a remake of the concept.
So, i got in touch with Daniel Comerci: i fell in love with some of his black/white lineart drawings and he also proved to be a super nice and professional guy, and soon he provided the rework:
Now, believe me when i say he already did an excellent job compared to the first version, but still the concept looked somewhat off, and talking with the soon-to-be sculptor he confirmed my feelings. The character had potential but some parts were confusing and the general mood was not consistent.
At this point i decided to allocate a higher budget for a re-remake: i expanded the background and did more research on Renaissance clothes/costumes, and together with Daniel we decided to focus on the esoteric and arcane sides of the char while taking away all references to nature, druidism etc.
He had to look like a sort of cultist, one who fights the Church, maybe someone who dresses like a priest (or stole the dress from one of them) in order to mock the Vatican.
Daniel did a great job and came out with 3 options!
First one was still displaying lot of natural elements: fur, bones, strings etc
Second one was more oriented towards an arcane character, adding a lot of metal inserts and a little more “refined” clothes.
The third option, which i decided for, was further simplified and almost entirely draws from Renaissance priests and bishops.
I was particularly happy about the addition of the pellegrina and pastor sash, and i decided to go full speed ahead with this version.
You will also notice there was this important change to the character’s pose: now he stands on a cross – we decided to represent it shortly after he destroyed a church, standing on the falling cross and showing a new path to his newfound followers – and his body language is different.
After a few tweaks, we quickly reached the final version:
Main changes i requested were:
– right hand: instead of pointing, the character should have been “offering” the path to his followers.
– staff: an eerie skull instead of the rotten head
– addition of details here and there: the staff is now more refined, the clothing has sewings/strings, the pouch and the sleeves were to be drawn after real historical items, let me show them below.
Unfortunately i don’t remember where the pouch’s image comes from, but the other pic is from a great book i’m using for historical references, ” Auguste Racinet – The Costume History”
At this point i was ready to pass the concept to the sculptor, Alessandro Depaoli: he’s a great guy who understood i was at my first experience in making a miniature and helped a lot during the whole process.
At first he suggested some pose changes and the tweaking/addition of some details, e.g. the gambeson on the right flank and the leather belt on top of the pastoral one.
I knew his gloomy and gritty style was perfect for the Heresiarch, and he didn’t disappoint:
But he went even further, suggesting the creation of some options in order to turn the “canonical” sculpt into a sort of necromancer.
So he created a wonderful alternate head, hand and necklace (i personally asked the necklace option because some people might find the inverted cross somewhat offensive towards their beliefs).
Here what you will obtain with these options:
Of course you’ll be able to mix all these details and create your own version of the Heresiarch.
Despite writing a background and doing my best to give my characters personality and depth, i think everyone should see them in their own way, imagining the story they prefer.
For example, a painter and colleague of mine told me this model made him think about a necromancer whose hand was in the act of summoning an eldritch portal behind him!
So, i hope this first article was interesting because i plan to write many more. Let me know what you think by leaving a comment!
If everything goes well, many characters will see light and i’d love to give some insight about their creation.
Preorder should now start very soon in april: if you’d like to be updated, follow Indaco Models on social medias and don’t forget to subscribe the newsletter.
Until next time,