If you want to get a little more involved, I have started a private Facebook Group. It includes Giveaways, previews, and fund discussions about many topics. I also ask the group for feedback on coins, colors, and new Collections. If you don't already know this, a "private" group on Facebook is exactly that. All posts and comments are only seen by the group, and not your friends and family.
The first Giveaway was held November 15th for just members of the Group, and the winner was Ronnie Roche. She was awarded a $100 Gift Card to spend in my store, and immediately picked a coin from Canada with a wolf. She had been eyeing it already, so an easy decision.
If you would like to apply to join the AnimalCoin VIP Group, CLICK HERE.
Yes, it is true! This was the very first coin that I completed to sell. Can't believe I have been painting coins now for 10 years. In honor of that, I just posted it in a second color. The original opalescent turquoise and now a deep translucent blue.
Trivia about Crocodiles: They can close their ears!
Most of us know crocodiles spend a lot of time in the water with just their heads peeking out. Their eyes are located high on their heads but their ears are a bit lower and so are underwater. They have special flaps that cover their ears and that keeps them dry. On land, they can open the ear flaps to hear better.
Ok, my sense of humor is out of control again! I think this coin from the Bahamas is already special with a starfish, but to me it also looks like a gold star. Everyone loved getting those when we were young!
My customers have asked for more than pendants, so here we go. A pendant, or a money clip, or a pin to wear on your clothing, hats, or purses. How about a nice little gift to thank someone with a "gold star."
I confess that the Turtle coin I paint from Colombia is my favorite turtle. I know, we aren't supposed to have favorite art projects or favorite children, but it happens.
The coin features a loggerhead turtle which is highly migratory and uses the Colombian beaches for nesting and mating. Unfortunately, it is an endangered species due to hunting and pollution. This coin is both a beautiful design and intended to help awareness of the issues.
It is interesting that the wavy lines which represent the ocean waves on the coin, are there as a security device to prevent counterfeiting. There is also very small text between the waves saying "aqua" which means "water.." On the other side of the coin, you will find very small text that says "cuidar el agua" which translates to "take care of the water." Pretty cool design and nice environmental message for all of us.
Sometimes an animal behavior article catches my eye. Recently a science study revealed that female dragonflies will fake their death to avoid male dragonflies that are pursuing them!
Sorry, even before I read the article, I was chuckling. Sounds like a modern soap opera. Well, dragonflies have been on earth for over 300 million years, so they might be a little more clever than we think.
If you are curious, to read the Newsweek article Click here
"Dragonflies symbolize our ability to overcome times of hardship.
They can remind us to take time to reconnect with our own strength, courage and happiness."
I used to stress over shopping for gifts. It seemed like I saw lots of great ideas EXCEPT when the time finally arrived to buy something. That day nothing seemed to fit.
Over the years my friends and customers have helped me find ways to take the pain out of the process, and I wanted to share some of those ideas.
Don't forget to make the presentation nice too. Many stores and sellers offer free gift wrapping and it pays to ask. If you have purchased the gift ahead of time, don't forget to put a post-it on the wrapped package so you remember what it is!
When I started painting animal coins, I never expected turtles to be the animal requested most often. That surprised me! Ok, I know that in many cultures turtles symbolize longevity, wisdom, and good luck. Was that why? So I decided to do a little research and found out some pretty amazing things.
Wear what you Love... AND know its story so you can share it!
This coin from Gambia has a lot of interesting things in its story. First of all, it is a 7 sided coin, which is not seen too often. First step to being fun and unique.
Even more interesting is the crocodile featured on the coin. Often coins feature something significant for the country issuing it, and this is certainly the case here. The crocodile featured is a "West African Slender Snouted Crocodile." Say that 3 times fast!
It's ancestors go back 20 million years and have been evolving in isolation ever since. If you aren't aware, crocodiles in general go back more than 230 million years, to around the time of the dinosaur. You might also be surprised to know that their closest living relatives are birds!
This crocodile is known for an unmistakable long and slender snout, which lacks any bony ridges. The snout is perfect for capturing fish, which is their main food. This breed of crocodile is a very shy species, and is known for its females being incredibly attentive parents. Each one of these interesting facts is a conversation starter, and your friends will be listening with interest!
It is only found in the West African region, which includes Gambia. Gambia is the smallest country in mainland Africa, and nearly 50% of its population live in poverty. The Slender Snouted Crocodile competes with fisherman in this area, and is critically endangered. So we hope that the fate of this unusual crocodile is protected, but it now makes perfect sense why Gambia honored it with a coin. Awareness may just make a difference!
Did you know?
Crocodiles symbolize Courage, Strength, and Honor