The term Hobo Nickel describes any small-denomination coin (though, normally soft nickels) that people carve to create miniature reliefs all sorts of things. It started sometimes in the 18th century but continues to this day. There is even an entire society dedicated to the art of nickel carving.
This all sounds stimulating, I know, but have a little faith. As with all types of art, something that seems simple in explanation is made beautiful and complicated in the hands of right artists. Check out a few of these Skull Nickels, a view of just what carvers do with these Hobo Nickels.
Which one is your favorite ?