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Not too late for artists to win $10,000

Deadline is Monday for artists who want to take a crack at designing the 2018 Breast Cancer Awareness commemorative coins.

The three denomination will even feature a pink gold $5 coin.

Collectors who want colored coins will get their first taste of it from the United States Mint.

Will they like it?

That depends on what artists come up with.

Most collectors simply know what they like and they don’t make a determination until they see it.

For artists, it is a matter of meeting requirements. According to Mint rules, and there are many rules, “In Phase One, artists will submit a digital portfolio, consisting of no more than five examples of their work. An expert jury will review these portfolios and select not more than twenty artists to proceed to Phase Two."

To the benefit of selected artists, the Mint decision-making process is rapid. To their detriment the artistic creation process will also have to move quickly.

Following the Monday, Oct. 17, submission deadline, the 20 successful artists will be notified by Nov. 14.

They will be asked to submit a coin design, both sides.

The rules say the chosen artists “will submit one design and/or 3D physical model, both obverse and reverse, for the proposed coins. Phase Two does not require a 3D physical model; however, public law stipulates that preference will be given to designs that consist of or are accompanied by physical designs.”

Deadline for the selected artists for submission of their work is Jan. 31, 2017.

The Mint will announce the top winner in June 2017.

Winning artist will have the honor of seeing his or her design on all three coins, the pink gold $5, a silver dollar and a clad half dollar.

That means it has to look good both on a large and a small planchet as well as one that is in-between.

There is a $10,000 prize for the winner.

The cash will take away the sting from the armchair criticisms that will surely follow.

Here are the complete rules.

Will the Mint find the next Augustus Saint-Gaudens?

Let’s hope so.

But if they haven’t entered by now, they have the weekend to get cracking.

Buzz blogger Dave Harper has twice won the Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog and is editor of the weekly newspaper "Numismatic News."

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