Today’s design, the last in my seven-day series of earring designs inspired by the seven wonders of the world, was inspired by the Grand Canyon.  Two hundred seventy-seven miles in length, anywhere from 4 to 18 miles in width, and over a mile deep at its deepest, the Grand Canyon in Arizona is thought to have been carved by the meandering Colorado River as far back as 17 million years ago.  The river continues to erode and carve out the canyon today.

Grand Canyon, AZ

My earring design inspired by the Grand Canyon follows:

Watercolor and Gouache Agate and Silver Earring Rendering by Joana Miranda

I chose to incorporate a red agate stone (carved into a doughnut shape) since the variegated bands of color common in this stone remind me of the layers of colors in the rocks of the Grand Canyon.  I also designed this earring with blackened silver.  Originally, the Grand Canyon was inhabited by Native Americans who built settlements within its caves.  The Pueblo people considered the Canyon a holy place and made pilgrimages to it.  Native Americans have a long and elegant tradition of working with silver; hence my choice of the metal for this design.

I hope my readers have enjoyed my whirlwind journey to some of the greatest architectural and natural wonders of our world!  In closing this week’s posts I’d like to quote Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (French aviator and writer who lived from 1900-1944):

A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.


  1. Helen Reich says:

    I like the hinge. Also, it almost looks as though the main part of the earring is hanging from the back of the earring (such as on post earrings). I don’t think that’s what you intended, but it might be interesting to create designs where the largest part of the earring hangs from the space behind the ear. N’est-ce pas? Just to be different.

  2. Hi Helen,

    Thanks for your comment and for the interesting idea about doing an earring design where the dangle is attached to the backing of the earring (I know that you’ve mentioned it to me before…it just hasn’t yet flowed out of my pencil yet;-)

    I did a cool brooch design this evening, only to realize that it wasn’t functional. See – I AM trying to be different;-)

    See you soon –

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