The designer of one of the Royal Canadian Mint’s popular 2014 Proof
silver $20 Bison coins is credited by the RCM as Doug Comeau, but the
image on the coin came from photographer Robert Berdan, according to a
recent news report from a local newspaper in Canada.
The story was reported by Simcoe.com, the community
website of Metroland North Media, a division of Metroland Media Group.
Berdan is a renowned wildlife photographer, and it was his image of a wood bison
next to a highway north of Fort Providence, N.W.T., that drew the
attention of Comeau, who was sketching designs for the RCM.
The wood bison (Bison bison athabascae, the largest land
mammal in North America) is larger than the plains bison (Bison
bison bison) that is common in the United States, and has a
The design, showing the animal facing the viewer head-on, was chosen
for the first Proof .9999 fine silver $20 coin in the Bison series.
Dubbed “The Bison: A Portrait,” the coin was released Feb. 4, and
subsequent $20 coins with various designs were issued through August.
All of the coins in the program, as well as many other bison coins,
were the subject of the World Coins section's cover story in Coin
World’'s August Monthly edition.
Read those earlier stories:
The coin had an issue price of $99.95 Canadian and is sold out
through the Royal Canadian Mint, but distributors like Gatewest Coins and Talisman Coins still offer it for less than
Berdan operates the Canadian Nature Photographer website, and also offers guided photography tours
and builds websites, among other endeavors.
This is his first coin, he told the newspaper.
“It is nice to get one of my photos on a coin,” he said. “I would
like to get some of my photos on a Canadian stamp, but it’s mostly
nice to see (my) images in print and that others like them.”
He has not been enlisted for any other coin projects, Barden told
To learn more about Berdan’s photography, visit his Flickr gallery or his website-building business.