Illustrator behind new €2 Dáil centenary coin stamping his mark on SME market

The illustrator behind the special €2 coin marking the 100 years since the first sitting of the Dáil is establishing his stamp on the SME market.

The Central Bank of Ireland will mint one million of these new €2 coins for general circulation, their tiny decorated canvas featuring the words ‘An Chéad Dáil’, as the meeting took place entirely in Irish.

Emmet Mullins’ coin design – which depicts the first TDs in attendance at the landmark event – was launched at the Mansion House earlier this month by the bank’s governor Philip R. Lane, along with a commemorative €100 coin.

Mullins, who set up Brandish: An Advertising and Design Bureau, said he was “delighted to have had the opportunity to play a part in marking an event of such historical significance for Ireland”.

After two decades working with advertising and design agencies, Mullins went out on his own last May to provide an “end-to-end” service for his clients.

“I have three core values: reliability, value and creativity. We work closely with clients to set realistic time lines and goals which leads to more value collaboration.

“When I take on a job, I don’t have a big staff and all that flash that comes with agencies. That means lower overheads, and less of a cost that’s passed on to the client.

“A lot of businesses are in the forgotten middle, they want agency quality work but they might not have the budget. Even if the budget is there, it’s small in agency terms and might not get the full focus. That’s where I come in.”

The successful creative was also involved in the only other special circulating euro coin issued by the Central Bank, chosen after a public competition.

Four and a half million €2 coins to commemorate the centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising were released to general circulation in 2016.

“Winning the public competition to design the 1916 Centenary coin was an incredible honour; being asked back to design this new commemorative coin to mark 100 years since the first sitting of Dáil Éireann is a humbling endorsement of my work,” he said.

In 2015, Mullins also designed the cover for a rare seven inch Rolling Stones single, Dead Flowers, from the album ‘Sticky Fingers’.

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