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Lead Image

Showcasing their killer engraving skills in a Devil’s coat of arms, Downey’s haunting Halloween card is one hell of a production triumph. 




Quantity Produced


Production Cost

Production Time

9 days

Dimensions (Width × Height × Depth)

Page Count

Paper Stock

Strathmore Writing / GF Smith / White Wove Platinum / 118gsm

Number of Colors






Downey's The Devil's in the Detail Letter
Downey's The Devil's in the Detail Letter
Downey's The Devil's in the Detail Letter
Downey's The Devil's in the Detail Letter ---

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Project Description

We wanted to showcase the engraving process in one of our promotional pieces so we decided to do this with our version of the Devil's coat of arms.

In Downey’s early history we were purely hand engravers and then we started printing ourselves in the 1960’s. Those traditional methods of hand engraving tie in nicely with private stationery, in particular royal warrants and coats of arms and that’s where a lot of our reputation comes from—this kind of highly detailed work. With this project there was a great opportunity to essentially show off the art of crest making and also to give an insight into the processes that make them work so well.

Production Lesson(s)

The biggest part of time we spent on this was developing the design. We started thinking about imagery that relates to the devil and ways in which we could incorporate as much detail as possible to create something really striking. There are various elements that make up a coat of arms; i.e the crest, the mantling, the helm, the compartment; all of which were really helpful in providing a structure to work with. I then used this to incorporate various devil symbolism — for example the pyramid and the all seeing eye, the trident, the flame pit and skulls at the base, the pentagram, the serpents, the raven, the number 13 and finally the horned goats holding it all together. It was a fun process and Phelan Barker did a fantastic job at interpreting our goals.

There's a lot of colours used in this and when you engrave you have to use a different die-stamping plate for each colour. We made sure not to let ourselves get too carried away and let the design hinder production, which is something that could definitely happen with a project this technical. ”

Post Author

Author Picture

Jessica Mullen

Writer for UnderConsideration LLC.

More: Online / On Twitter


Date Published

April 27, 2015


Filed Under

Holiday Card


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About UnderConsideration

UnderConsideration is a graphic design firm generating its own projects, initiatives, and content while taking on limited client work. Run by Bryony Gomez-Palacio and Armin Vit in Bloomington, IN. More…

blogs we publish

Brand New / Displaying opinions and focusing solely on corporate and brand identity work.

Art of the Menu / Cataloguing the underrated creativity of menus from around the world.

Quipsologies / Chronicling the most curious, creative, and notable projects, stories, and events of the graphic design industry on a daily basis.

products we sell

Flaunt: Designing effective, compelling and memorable portfolios of creative work.

Brand New Conference videos / Individual, downloadable videos of every presentation since 2010.

Prints / A variety of posters, the majority from our AIforGA series.

Other / Various one-off products.

events we organize

Brand New Conference / A two-day event on corporate and brand identity with some of today's most active and influential practitioners from around the world.

Brand Nieuwe Conference / Ditto but in Amsterdam.

Austin Initiative for Graphic Awesomeness / A speaker series in Austin, TX, featuring some of the graphic design industry's most awesome people.


Favorite Things we've Made / In our capacity as graphic designers.

Projects we've Concluded / Long- and short-lived efforts.

UCllc News / Updates on what's going at the corporate level of UnderConsideration.

The End