Welcome to Grafikato!
I am a graphic designer and my specialties are Pathtag, geocoin, and challenge coin design.
What are Pathtags?
Pathtags are small metal collectable tokens, roughly the size of the quarter. They come with a customizable front side, and a standardized back side with a serial number so that they can be tracked and logged via the Pathtags website. Available metal platings are silver (the standard), gold, black nickel, and copper. They are briskly traded between Pathtag owners and designers, and are often used as personal signature items in geocaching.
What is Geocaching?
Geocaching is a GPS game, in which people hide containers ("caches") in interesting places and post the coordinates on one of several websites, the most major of which is www.geocaching.com. The containers have a log book in them for visitors to sign and usually contain "swag" or "treasure" in the form of inexpensive plastic toys or camping items. A popular type of personalized treasure is the geocoin, a metal coin with a tracking number on it that is used on the website to track the coin's travel from cache to cache. Although there are a few "generic geocoin" designs, most geocoins are highly personalized and inventive and come in all kinds of shapes and colors -- in fact, some geocoins bear little resemblance to a coin at all. These items are extremely collectable and, as with Pathtags, there is a brisk trade among collectors.
What are Challenge Coins?
Challenge coins are a military tradition. Typically, a military command (such as a ship or squadron) will have a signature coin, usually bearing the command crest and other inspirational wording. The standard story goes that every member of the command is supposed to carry one: when out drinking, a person might pull out his or her challenge coin and tap it on the table, thereby "challenging" the others. The person who can't pull out a command coin and answer the tap then has to buy the next round of drinks. Today, challenge coins are not limited to commands; ranking officers will often have a personal coin which they will hand out in recognition of excellence, and it is also custom for "mustangs" (enlisted personnel who are being commissioned) to have a personal coin to hand out at their commissioning ceremonies.
Grafikato can help!
If you're looking to have a personal geocoin or challenge coin designed, I can help. I also will have a variety of ready-made Pathtag designs, easily customizable with your name, if you would like to jump into the Pathtag community right away. The website is updated often, so check back for news updates!