I’ve had the great pleasure of talking with Dani Hinze, the creator of a new series of statue collectibles coming soon! Bounties of Bathos™ is more than just line-up of (very) cool characters, though. It’s an entire universe! Dani has been working hard for years shaping and developing this world. Now the time has finally come for him to share his creation.
Bounties of Bathos™ (official website here) is a sci-fi tale set in a post-apocalyptic world. It features alien races, humans fighting for survival, mech armors, and bounty hunters! There’s a lot more to it than that, though, but instead of me rambling on about how cool this sounds. Let’s skip right to the interview and have Dani introduce himself and his universe.
Hi Dani. First of all, thanks a lot for taking the time to do this interview. I know a lot of people have been looking forward to learning more about this universe that you are creating (Bounties of Bathos). It also seems like a very interesting and original project and the character designs and statues look amazing!
Firstly, could you tell us a little about yourself?
Dani: Cool, I will try and keep it short and brief. I am someone who is in love with art – in all of its forms. Painting. Drawing. Statues. For me, it’s more like a passion. Without art in my life, it would not be worth living. From a very early age, I have devoted myself to art. I guess it’s what makes me happy!
I know a lot of people within the statue collecting community already know who you are. Still, could you tell us a little about yourself as a collector?
Dani: I have been collecting, since a very young age. My Dad used to buy me Batman comics every month. Since than I have been collecting comics up till today, lol! I got into statues in 2007. My First one was a bust of Batman from DC Direct. So in terms of statues, I have collected since 2007, but comics since I was around 12.
And what is your most prized collectible in your collection today?
Dani: In terms of statues, probably Grey Hulk PF, I have a lot of prototypes, in storage, of statues I have made in the past. Those are very valuable to me as well.
Right, so let’s talk about Bounties of Bathos. What is Bounties of Bathos?
Dani: Bounties of Bathos is bringing to collectors a fresh new take on a sci-fi universe. I have a passion for sci-fi films and books. I wanted to create something, that no one has ever done before. Bathos is the name of the planet that the story is set in. Most of the characters are bounty hunters. So the title is “Bounties”, the contracted jobs they take on the alien planet called “Bathos”. Bathos is very much set on a post-apocalyptic planet, it’s a very organic universe, which blends in a lot [of themes] from stories like Mad Max, Akira and Aliens. But the story is nothing like those – very original.
How would you describe the tone and atmosphere of Bounties of Bathos?
Dani: The tone is very dark and gritty. A story that shows the real danger behind power and the species that misuse it. In Bathos, humans are not the strongest race in the galaxy. Therefore, they are subject to a ruling class of cruel and dangerous beings called Zectus/Victus, that only have one thing in mind: destroying humans.
Pictures this: Zectus are the “humans”. Humans are the “chicken”. So it’s a real struggle on Bathos for survival and only the strongest hunters will survive. There are also other races, Victus and Vipcans which are much stronger than Zectus. So humans are having a hard time trying to stay alive.
For how long have you been developing and working on Bounties of Bathos?
Dani: Since December, 2013.
How did you come up with the idea for Bounties of Bathos?
Dani: Well, mainly Star Wars, in particular Boba Fett stories. I also enjoyed a lot of sci-fi anime. So, Akira and Blue Gender. Inspired the stories a lot. I had a fascination with mechs and love stories like Evangelion. I wanted to make part mech, part human. I don’t think that has ever been done in high-end collectibles.
Yea, you are working on a line of statues for Bounties of Bathos. Will you be satisfying the needs of fans in any other way?
Dani: Yes. Like Court of the Dead [line of statues from Sideshow Collectibles]. Bounties of Bathos will have everything. We will release two characters a year. With that we will be releasing, art prints for the characters and universe. I’m working on a novel for the story. With each release there will be a very short comic strip with an intro of the character. Comics are in the works as well.
This seems like such a huge undertaking so I am assuming that you at this point are working with others in creating Bounties of Bathos?
Dani: Yes, Bounties of Bathos has a fantastic team. I am the creative director (came up with the story and characters and how they should look, etc.). Mufizal Moktar is our main sculptor on the project (and art director). Ben Wu, designs our website and handles production. Soefara, is in our design team, handling the art prints, box design and general management. We also have Ario and Kobe Sek that make the illustrations for the universe and art prints for the characters. We have great painters, James Tce and Kevin, on board that bring Bathos to life and color to our universe.
So we have a great team, and I’m very fortunate to be a part of this project.
How would you describe the creative process behind Bounties of Bathos so far? Has it been a challenge? Do you have past experience with something similar that you can draw from?
Dani: Bathos, has been the hardest thing I personally have ever done in my life. I thought it would be easy creating characters, but it’s extremely difficult. Not only do you have to come up with names, places, maps, worlds, universes, ships, weapons, solid story, combine all of the elements, we needed to change the sculpt many times, to make it as good as we wanted it. It took a very long time to create these, from the concept designs to the final paint. But very rewarding in the end.
I have a good eye, for things. Usually when making statues in the past there was a great guide-line to follow. But creating something new and exciting for people was a very challenging task.
Let’s talk about a bit about those awesome statues you are working on. Can you tell us what scale they will be? Size? Weight? Materials?
Dani: Scale is 1/4th. A lot of the characters in Bathos are in mechs so most will be over 20 inches tall. Ren around 17 inches will be one of the smallest.
We wanted these to really stand out and quality is a must for this line. So we are keeping the E.S. [edition size] very small. Only 125 will be made of the first two characters. Why we do that? So we have a much tighter grip on production.
Some characters will have light-up. On others we will use real fabric. Some will have glass domes over their heads, lol! Others will have metal swords. We want these statues to not only look good painted. But have a lot of others elements which make them rare and unique. This is the total outlook for this line.
We have created six hunters so far. 2 are finished, 2 are still in the sculpting phase. So there is a lot in store for this line. In the book there are 12 hunters and hopefully we can achieve that goal.
Today, Premium Formats from Sideshow Collectibles are very popular, but we also see newer companies gaining more popularity with high quality products. Where will Bounties of Bathos fit into all of this? What will set your line of statues apart from the rest?
Dani: Well, as mentioned, where companies are going in one direction, with high E.S, HMO is going in a different direction. We want our collectibles to be really rare.
The quality of every statue is very important, because of it being an original universe. We want it to stand out when you put it next to something that is known DC, Marvel, etc. My general outlook is that DC, Marvel and Street Fighter is great – most of collectors like that [stuff]. But there are some, like myself, who want something different. Want something unique, and with mechs there is a lot of things you can do, with a character, to make them look awesome.
Our goal is to make statues, that people have never seen before. Keep it rare so it’s a “real collectible”.
But most importantly, to “create”. I think a lot of collectibles [companies] these days are just rehashing the same characters. Which is not a bad at all. Like myself… I love buying Magneto and so do other collectors. But I’m sure there are those that just want something “new”. Something never done before.
We just want to be different and give collectors options. A fresh new universe with a different take on the collectibles industry.
What about edition size? What thoughts have you put into this?
Dani: So with the first two it will be around 125. No matter how popular Bathos gets. The edition size will never exceed 350. For some companies the lowest is 500. We want ours to be much lower.
I am a strong believer of very small edition sizes. With Bathos or any project, I do with HMO, the smaller the better (in terms of edition size).
In terms of statues, what part of the creation process do you consider particularly important in order to create a high quality product?
Dani: The poses and bases. Especially with a line of statues. A lot of collectibles, I think, are not as good as they could have been. Because the pose was not thought out thoroughly. They created a great sculpt but the pose is all wrong. It’s the first thing I think about.
Another thing is the base. Generally, when making a line of statues you want the bases to all have a similar size and fit next to each other in a cabinet. That’s one of the most exciting things about collecting. Having the whole line and displaying them with each other.
So in the creation process, the pose and base are very important. There is also a lot of other things you have to consider, but these two, for me, are the most important.
What is a good statue in your eyes?
Dani: The sculpt is the most important. Anatomy is very important as well. Most times, if a sculptor knows about anatomy, they can make the perfect figure. I do study the anatomy of a statue before I even think about buying it.
What characters (statues) can you reveal at this time and when will they be available/released?
Dani: Ren and Crow King. They should ship next year. We are sculpting one of Crow King’s main knights called Sorrow.
We love the female anatomy, though, in the first six characters only two are female. Sorrow is one of my favorite characters in the whole story. Crow King, is like a lion. He takes down the big hunters in the galaxy. But Sorrow is his lioness she takes down just about everyone, lol!
Our goal is to show two [statues] a year. With release the following year.
How/where will I be able to pre-order these statues?
Dani: From the HMO website. We are working on trying to get Sideshow to distribute them, but for now, the HMO website.
So, what does the future have in store of Bounties of Bathos?
Dani: Art prints. More character reveals. We have a guy called Vortex who is a god killer in our universe. Another aged bounty hunter called Rusty, who has never lost a bounty. A zombie mech hunter, and many more!
Also a novel is coming and comics. I think anyone that loves anime, sci-fi, mechs and superheroes will really be in for a treat with what’s coming up.
Thanks a lot for answering these questions, Dani. I can’t wait to see the release of these statues, and I wish you the very best of luck!
Dani: Thank you so much Christian for this interview. I am honored, and a thank you to all the people that support our project. We really appreciate it and hope we can bring you the awesome sci-fi characters that we think sci-fi and superhero fans in general can come to love.
Most of our characters have a very superhero themed appearance. We have a strong knowledge of all the popular sci-fi films and wanted to integrate some of those elements into our collectibles.
Hope you like what you see HMO creating and can’t wait to reveal more!
Alright! That was the entire interview right there. I have to say that I am very excited about this line of statues that Dani, his team and HMO are working on. He seems to be very much in tune with the mentality of today’s high-end statue collectors. Many companies and creators out there can often seem out-of-sync or detached from the community of collectors. That is certainly not the case with Dani and his team. He started as a collector, but made his passion into something much more than just that. So I have quite a lot of faith in his vision and I have a lot of admiration for his passion and creativity. He knows what collectors likes and dislikes, and I believe that this familiarity of the statue scene will help him to create something that a lot of people will be able to fall in love with.
Currently, we’ve only been introduced to one character, but very soon, we will see more characters. Ren sure looks impressive, though!
If you want to see more photos of Ren, check out my write-up of her in the article linked below.
For now, thanks a lot for reading! Leave a comment and support Dani and his project by sharing this article!
To learn more about Bounties of Bathos™, check out their website.
Write-up of Ren: