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Aquatics 50p Coin Design

Aquatics Video Transcript

Tell us about yourself - and about the coin you designed?
My name is Jonathan Olliffe, I’m from Oxford and I designed the aquatics coin and the gymnastics coin.

What got you interested in the competition?
I chose to enter this competition as I saw it as a challenge, the aquatics one was a challenge because of creating the illusion of water on a coin.

Why did you choose aquatics for your design?
I choose aquatics because of the challenge that water posed in creating that illusion of water on a fifty pence coin. My background as a silversmith I feel helped in a sense of thinking about how engraving works and the illusion of the lines engraved into the metal and the simplicity of engraving.

What was the inspiration behind your idea?
My aquatics design derived from various imagery, images from books, old images which I felt was important for old images to come into my contemporary coin and general imagery from the internet as well; and just drawing and sketching, I went for a series of sketching different types of swimmers, swimmers in different positions in the water and trying to imitate water in various different ways and eventually arrived at engraved lines to create that illusion of water.

How does it feel to know your coin is going to be in the pockets of millions of people for years to come?
The thought that my coin is going to be released into circulation nationwide is extremely exciting especially for me as a silversmith, that connection with metal, it's like having a piece of art in someone’s pocket it’s very exciting.