The Dark Fortress

Hector Rex and retinue by Praesor

The drive for painting excellence comes in many forms. Sometimes it's just the challenge of trying to complete something for a deadline. Sometimes it's the wish to do justice to a beautiful model.

Here is Praesor's Inquisitor and retinue fulfilling both challenges, put together for the 2009 Golden Demons award in Toronto. The squad entry specified the unit must consist of 5 models — so as Hector Rex only had 3 henchmen Praesor decided to add a Death Korps Commissar as a Veteran Guardsman to make the unit competition-legal. A good choice as the Commissar is a feisty looking character that adds greatly to the dynamic of the unit.

NMM and other highly developed painting techniques were utilsed as one would expect in an entry to a competition of this stature, as Praesor explains:

I pushed myself and challenged my abilities on this project since I have never tried to paint an entire squad using the NMM technique and blending every little detail on the models.

All the models were painted using a wet palette and Praesor blended all the colours together with numerous very thin glazes to give more depth and character. In all it took about 100+ hours over three weeks to paint the entire squad. Around 40 hours went in to completing the units' cloaks — with a remarkable 60 layers on Rex's cape alone! This is true dedication and the sheer perseverance required to keep going would be a challenge to many.

For me the largely cold palette is what makes this unit tick. Cold blues, brassy golds and grey bases with the only warmth on the models coming smaller red details in the form of purity seals and other minor items. It's interesting that every model has a red item on the base — a nicely unifying detail that makes the models a 'unit' rather than a group of individual models. Basing is a very important feature that can impact greatly on the collective mass of models.


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