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Arriving Saturday, June 30th, 2012


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Yes, I know it's a bold claim, but I assure you it's not something I would say unless I knew I could back it up ;)


(I even made a little poster for it...)



For those who don't know me, I've been design geocoins for a while now and I've met some really great friends along the way. Geocoins have been a passion for me over the years and working closely with other cachers to create them has been a tremendous experience. I've learned so much and enjoyed so many wonderful moments with each coin.


After much thought and almost 6 years after designing my first trackable geocoin, I've finally made the leap to go another round. I've been working on a new design for quite awhile, but after spending last summer visiting cachers at events and sharing ideas I decided it was time to start again. After designing hundreds of geocoins over the years though I couldn't just make another without shaking things up a bit. This time I was going to go outside the box... WAY outside.


I've designed following other people's ideas, collaborated with talented minds, worked to fulfill other's wishes and generally had a great time doing it. Still, it sometimes feels like I forget to create simply for the joy of creating art. As a professional artist this is a big problem and sometimes you just have to shake off your constraints, throw out all the rules and try something totally different. This time, I'm designing for me. This time, you'll get to see it all from the inside out.


I can't take all the credit. Like with any trackable this one took a lot of help to make it happen. A lot of talented people put in a lot of hours with my pestering, prodding, digging for feedback, fine tuning and generally driving them nuts. Of course, that's how most of my coin designs go so they're sorta used to it, but this one took even more out of them and for that I thank you guys (you know who you are - lol) so much for your help.


So here we are again. Another new design to tempt your spirit of love for the geocoin. This time is different though. I've never promised you a geocoin that would be different from anything else out there in the world before. This time I'm confident that I can offer you something no one has ever experienced since the day the geocoin arrived. In 5 days I invite you all to join me in introducing my latest creation to the world of geocaching. Sincerely, Hound




for the mods...


Trackable at Geocaching.com

Design Approved by Groundspeak


Edited by Eartha
image replacement
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That's a boooold statement. :)


Can't wait!



Just realized that I'll be off the grid on Saturday, sunning on a beach and eating lobster with the family. Guess I'll have to wait until Canada Day to see what you've come up with.

Edited by E&Cplus3
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I guess this coin won't be fitting in a peppermint tin.


Most definitely! lol Unless you can find a really BIG tin ;)


Yes, they will definitely be at the MidWest GeoBash. I can't wait to see everyone there!


Oh Boy ,,Oh Boy !!!..... what time Saturday.....? For purchase hopefully ? :o

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I've been getting a lot of email all of a sudden! Lots of folks asking just "how big is this?" All will be revealed tomorrow, but I'll give you a little something to chew on until then...


My shipping total alone to get them here with Echo Global Logistics was over $800. Yep, they're that big and that heavy and had be transferred to a second pallette when they crushed the first one! :laughing:




And with that, I'm crawling back to my design board... more coins await! :ph34r::anibad::)

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Well I didn't get much sleep last night after all and am enjoying a splitting headache this morning, but the sun is out, the breeze is cool and it's going to be a great day to get out caching for many of us so life is good and full of promise. Here we go...


It all started rolling with true momentum after a long conversation with Ester (aka: Big Guy in TX)last summer during back-to-back Mega events. She'd asked some questions about my coin designs and I began some rather lengthy explanations of the details, back-stories, tears and hilarity involved in those designs. Now, Ester is serious about story telling and she has a kinship for stories worth repeating so when she asked me if I had ever written any of it down I realized she wasn't just asking for curiosity sake. I admitted that I had not, but that I had saved years of emails, sketches and tens of thousands of electronic design files attached to these stories. She said "You'd better write it all down before you start forgetting it!". I spent about an hour considering it and promptly got distracted thinking about another coin design I had in mind.


After everyone had gone home and I was eagerly tackling new coin designs I started keeping slightly better notes just in case I might need them some day. After a half dozen designs I realized I was spending almost as much time organizing and taking notes as I was designing. It's very distracting! So I took a solid few days and really explored what it would mean to actually put it down in words.


Luckily, I seldom throw away emails having anything to do with geocoin designing so I had roughly 2000 emails to peruse. Unfortunately, I had 2000 emails to peruse! That's 58 pages of emails in my hotmail account.. ******###aaargh!!!!!*****




I would need to make a lot of phone calls, do a LOT of researching into my past, dig up monstrous file folders from old back-up drives, sketches from my old sketchbooks and even loose pieces of paper with random notes jammed into those sketchbooks and finally start doing some interviews. In the middle of all that, I would be taking thousands of photos of coins. Everyday the light is different and for best results I would need to take shots between 12:30pm and 2:30pm for the highest quality natural light to avoid having to use soft-boxes and flashbulbs. I want people to see how coins really look held in the hand after all. So I would take dozens of pictures of each coin in natural light and then turn it over and start over. This process would take almost 3 weeks as I would need to work around mother nature's schedule and limited good light in the winter.






Then I began to write... and write... and write... beat my head against the wall, drink my sixth cup of coffee and write some more. Sadly, this was the easiest part of the whole project!


Like most any geocoin I design it's all about research, research, research, but unlike coin design I'd also be tackling all new software this time around. Despite being very familiar with dozens of graphics programs I had zero training in the one program I would need to master to complete the task. That meant going back to school.




So I opened an account (once again) at Lynda.com and sat down for a solid week. It took about 140 sessions to complete, but four and a half days later I began to put it all together. Here's a quick glimpse of my desktop while working with about half of my tool palettes active. Thank goodness I have over 46" wide of screen space because I can't even fathom how much more difficult this would be on a regular single monitor!




Finally after almost 3 months I sat back and admired my work. That wasn't so bad I thought to myself. What a noob! Ever here of editors? Bless their patient nature, cursed red pens that never run out of ink and their finicky nature about using grammar that would let people decipher my mess of random ranting and raving! Lol They were very kind and encouraging and often said I had an "interesting way of writing" which is editor speak for no skill whatsoever I'm sure :D


Finally even my editors ran out of things to tear apart and rebuild. They smiled and laughed more and rolled their eyes less as we finally wrote the final words for what was probably the fifth time (optimistically 5th!).


It was time to take the really big leap now. I wasn't about to do anything half way so off I went to Bowker. Bowker Identifier Services is the ISBN (those identifying numbers for printed books)issuing company for the U.S.A. and the final hurdle to getting anything to print. Coincidentally, they also keep your book on electronic file for the US Library of Congress so now Geocoins are a permanently recorded part of US and world history, too!




Everything was done except actually manufacturing the finished pieces. It was easily ten times harder than any geocoin I've ever worked on! I was all gung-ho until I saw the numbers before me though. It was a much more serious commitment than I was willing to admit early on. Time to consult my better half. I asked Moun10Girl what she thought and she said "Go for it! What's the worst that could happen? You'd have to get a job?" "I have a job!" I retorted. "You know what I mean" she said, "another job!" Then she just laughed. She was happy if I was happy with my work and said she'd only be disappointed if I gave up. So I gritted my teeth and signed it all on the dotted line.


A few weeks later here I am waiting like a expectant father.








Now I just needed to get 2 tons of books back to my office! Thank goodness Fluttershy has strong arms and a willingness to work for an early copy - lol. Seriously, though, thanks so much Allie for all your help!!


Now I could finally open them!



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... and sign, number and apply the engraved gold foil tracking codes...






... and individually scan for defects before bagging...




... and add my seal of approval...




...before re-boxing them.




One box down... 100 more to go!





A little about this Volume I...


- It's Trackable! on Geocaching.com with a custom icon

- Every Limited Edition is hand signed and numbered (I have the blood blisters to prove it!)

- Read the real stories behind the designs (for better and worse... this isn't a cute-and-fuzzy-bunny rendition of reality!)

- Seldom or never-before-seen images of some variations of those coins

- Shouts outs to the outstanding designs of others who affect my work

- Commentary from coin legends in our community

- Coin design lessons called "Design Shorts" to help you with your coin project (or least introduce you to coin designing techniques, hardware and software)

- Points of interest, trivia and secrets from the designs

- High Resolution, full offset print, enlarged photos of each design included.

- Coins from other creators that inspired me then and now. This isn't just all about me ;)

- It's a piece of history! The first and only Geocoin book in the US Library of Congress!








Now that it's all ready to go out into the world I realize I've come full circle to my regular philosophy on coin designs. That each should tell a good story, engage the viewer with consideration and impart new ideas. I fell in love with geocoins for the stories. They had such diverse backgrounds and the people who make them are shaped so uniquely by their life experiences that each coin gave me a feeling of connection to them and this community. I love the stories, the passion behind the ideas and the experience of viewing it for the first time with my own eyes..


Most important to me a geocoin is an interactive piece. Holding it in hand and turning it over imparts a tactile function. You give and receive in this exchange. This book encourages the same. As you read and thoughts spring up, you can write them right into the book. Moun10Girl looked ill the first time she saw me do this, but now just shakes her head as I busily scribble new ideas, make notations and generally make mine more personal each day. I hope you can enjoy the same experience. When people Discover your book, they can Log the sign in sheet in the back. When you Discover other trackables you can record them here as well. This volume will grow with you and your love for coins. Every one of them if used to their full potential will become as unique as the cachers carrying them! I can't wait to see one of these in the near future chock full of ideas and inspiration for new coins that we can share and discuss :)


Thanks for being a part of this wonderful, crazy, enthusiastic society of caching. You guys inspire me every day and I look forward always to the next idea, the next inspiration and the next geocoin!




The Details:


Limited Edition: (THESE WILL NOT BE REPRINTED - There will only be one chance to get the Trackable LE of the first book of Geocoin Design ever).


999 Total Copies (so far... found 1 that was damaged in transit)


Individually numbered 1/1000

Individually signed


8.75" Wide x 11.25" Tall x .5" Thick

96 Interior Pages

176 Illustrations / Photos


Trackable: Yes

Custom Icon: Yes


The MSRP for the Limited Editions is 29.99

Edited by fox-and-the-hound
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What a great idea. I need to get one of those!!!!! I Need To Get One!!!

I mean: I NEED TO GET ONE!!!!!!


Just too curious: is our coin in that book too?


:) Sorry, not this volume. It will be in a future volume though. I'm halfway into Volume II now. I'm writing in the order I designed and the years involved. I want people to experience with me as I learn, adapt and evolve with the world of geocoins rather than just hilight a few hot spots. I want to put the stories with the pieces so people can really appreciate all the facets of what happened so they really feel the love, tears and sweat that goes into them!

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WOW!!! amazing job!!! Well done my friend!!!!! Huh... I wish I could buy but.. hmm... one was damaged? so this little one will be off? any chance to adoptthis poor damaged book... for my library and my collection? :laughing: I am kiding my friend! :D


It is really very cool project and very helpful!!! Bravo!!! :D

Edited by GATOULIS
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Did I miss it or is everyone afraid :ph34r: to ask the Price?


I'm sorry, I thought it was up there so thank you for asking. The MSRP for the Limited Editions is 29.99, but each vendor may run their own specials/offers/combos, etc. with accompanying items specific to these volumes. (There are some really cool surprises still coming!) They do ship by Media Mail so they should be very reasonable for shipping.


I've been very conscious in trying to keep as low a price as possible and still recover enough to begin the next volume. I want as many people as possible to be able to enjoy them :)

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