reproduced from Paula McCooey, Ottawa Citizen,
“While Joel Kimmel may not be attending the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on May 19, the Ottawa-born illustrator’s connection to the soon-to-be royal couple will be forever etched in history.
The artist was commissioned by the Royal Canadian Mint to sketch the couple’s image for the commemorative coin that was launched Wednesday, 10 days before the much-anticipated wedding, which will be held at St. George’s Chapel inside the grounds of Windsor Castle.
Kimmel, 37, who lives in Westport, has sketched more than 25 images for the Mint. He spent the better part of the winter working on the special collector coin. As the snow fell, Kimmel began the creative process in his quintessentially Canadian backyard studio — once a canoe repair shop — and sketched the image inspired by the couple’s official engagement photo, using both pencil and paper and a digital drawing program on his tablet.
“I can mimic different styles of brushes, different media, so I can have a brush in Photoshop that looks like a paintbrush, that can act like a piece of chalk,” said Kimmel, who graduated from the Sheridan College illustration program.
The end result is a sparkling fine silver coin that features a depiction of the couple, edged with maple leaves intertwined with roses and escallop shells from Prince Harry’s coat of arms; as well as three Swarovski crystals to represent the couple’s three-stone engagement ring: a diamond sourced from Botswana and two side diamonds from the personal collection of the late Diana, Princess of Wales. The reverse side of the coin features an effigy of the Queen by artist Susanna Blunt.
Kimmel was pleased with the final engraving.
“It’s beautiful. I’m very impressed with it. The portraits of Harry and Meghan are fantastic, even Harry’s scruffy beard comes across well. There is a really nice finish on the coin and the crystals really sparkle. It’s exciting to see,” said Kimmel, who also designed the packaging.”
Well done, Joel. So proud of you!