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Four coins of the apocalypse

Posted in Blog, Coins, Design, Illustration, Process

The coin design and manufacturing process can take several months and it’s rare that I get show any designs before they make it to the shelves. Coin Club Australia , the client for this project, has allowed me to show the concepts for a potential set of coins to mark the much-hyped date of 21/12/2012. I don’t believe the conclusion of the Mayan calendar will cause anything cataclysmic but I still enjoyed working on these concepts and I’m pretty happy with the layout, even if the subject is well… a bit depressing. The project is still under development and there are some other completely different concepts in the works.

Below are a few of the very early, very rough concepts I worked on while the direction of the project still needed some exploration.  I personally love the idea of doing the four horsemen but I’m not sure if it would appeal to a wider audience or might be a bit too biblical for peoples’ tastes.

Here are a few shots of the rendering process. At this stage I get many reference images and place them around my work area (a trick I learned from Bobby Chiu) and draw a new image by first sketching, outlining and then filling in the details. The trickiest part of designing these particular coins would have to be creating the fictional cities and trying to avoid making them look too much like any particular place or building. This probably took the longest time, drawing man-made structures is not one of my strengths.

At this stage, these concepts were approved and would normally go on to be manufactured. The project however may be taking a different direction. I’d still love to hear people’s thoughts or critiques on these coins.


  1. four horsemen look amazing and I think coin club would be crazy not to put those out!

    great designs – well done!

    • Thanks skipau! We are still going ahead with something, I can say that much.

      It will be interesting to see if the feedback we’ve had will change the direction of this project again, I’ve always wondered how revealing early concepts would affect things.

      Thanks for posting it on Silver Stackers 🙂

  2. Love your concepts!! Probably the Four Horsemen personified and the coloured ones with the numbers to the left (top ones) are my favourites. Would love to see the Perth Mint offer a complete boxed set with the ones I mentioned in an eight coin boxed set.
    If they Collector club go in another direction I would urge you to send your designs to the NZ Mint, they would do your designs justice.

    • Thanks for your comments Glenn!

      The feedback for the four horsemen has been surprisingly positive and it’s nice to know that people like some of the other early concepts.

      Coin Club has decided that The Perth Mint will be making the final product. I don’t doubt NZ Mint would make some nice coins though!

  3. I couldn’t help myself from posting it on SS as when I saw it i was like.. finally some coins that I would like to buy! hahaha..

    Like you said – will be interesting to see what the feedback does to the project… the market it so interesting at the moment so who knows what will sell, even if the feedback it good.

    Keep up the great designs! Oh and I wanted to say that the Wildlife in Need postcard is fantastic too – the textures on the animals, especially the tiger and polar bear, really makes it.

    • That’s awesome to hear!

      Only time will tell what the outcome of this project will be (I’m not even sure at this stage). I’ll post updates if/when I get the opportunity.

      Thanks for the lovely compliments on my other work too 🙂 I really appreciate it!

    • 🙂 Thanks rbaggio!

  4. Hi Elise, any word on these coin designs and in what form we may see them?

    • Hi Glenn!

      I’m sorry for my lack of updates on these coins. Unfortunately despite the encouraging feedback the project has been cancelled. There are a number of good projects in production and it was decided that this one would have to be put aside in order to make way for the others.

      I just realised I previously said we were definitely going ahead with something, at that stage it was very certain it would be a 2012 coin/set/series of some kind. A project is still going ahead in its place but it won’t be these coins.

      A few people might be disappointed but I hope that the other projects will make up for it 🙂

  5. The serie with 4 Horsemen is amazing

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