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September 2023 - The Jeweled Darner


This item is password protected and available to members of The Geocoin Club only. If you are a member of The Geocoin Club, you will receive the month's password in club newsletter email.

Design By: Chris Mackey 

Dimensions 45 mm Wide

Thickness 3.5 mm

Finish Antique Bronze

Enameling Soft

Trackable? Yes

Has Icon Yes

September 2023 - The Jeweled Darner

Design notes from the artist:  Chris Mackey

Spending summers in Puget Sound as a child, I was constantly surrounded by jewel toned dragonflies and damselflies of every color in the rainbow.  I would find them cold and still on long blades of grass, driftwood, or forest vines and hold them in hands until they warmed enough to blast away at high speed to find their morning meal.  I'd spend evenings watching them hunting over ponds, fields and ocean tidal pools.  Late summer and early fall are their most active times and wherever I looked, they were always on the move, hunting, and dazzling me with their aeronautic feats. I'm not alone being in awe of their beauty and prowess.  Since before recorded history, dragonflies have captured the admiration of people all around the world.

Different cultures have very strong beliefs as to the symbolism associated with the dragonfly, but in almost all of them, they represent change.  From their life in the underworld of their watery darkness at night, living as horrifically ugly ambushers to their emergence into dominating the brilliance of the daytime skies in all their jewel-toned glory, dragonflies are the epitome of change.  They were admired for their otherworldly skill of sight and in some cultures were believed to see between worlds and guide spirits to and from earth.  In others, they represent healing, beauty, strength, swiftness, happiness, and transition.  It seems every trait they exhibit is easily admired. Even their nick name as the "Devil's Darner", as a warning that they could sew shut the lips of a lying child in the blink of an eye, can be admired with a parent's smirking approval.

While researching for this design I ran across some amazing points of interest.  Some I knew, some I discovered with more than a bit of astonishment.  The most notable, of course, is their flight which is unlike any other insect on the planet.  While other insects might flap their wings hundreds of times a minute to achieve flight, the dragonfly flaps its wings as little as 30 times in a minute, but in only the first 3 strokes of its wings can accelerate to over 50kmh.  As if it that weren't astounding enough, they can fly in all six directions at will, hover perfectly still, or even more amazingly fly completely upside down.  The second point of note is that they're possibly the world's most perfect ambush predator with approximately a 95% kill rate per attempt compared to other top of the food chain predators that average almost 20%.  Their ability to see their prey in motion in near 360 degrees combined with their ability to fly in all directions allow their specially developed brains to estimate their target's flight path to predict future location more accurately than a heat seeking missile.  These skills have served them well as one of the oldest and most successful predator species on the planet at over 300 million years of existence with minimal change except their size.  

This coin is a homage to the incredible dragonfly and its inspiration in our lives.  Their transition from the blinding dark to the brightness of full light is reminiscent of the veil being lifted from our eyes when we discover the magical wonders of geocaching.  Brilliant treasure hidden everywhere waiting to be discovered in both day and night.  This coin design holds numerous hidden secrets and symbols associated with these flying treasures. I hope you enjoy discovering them as much as I enjoyed implementing them into forged metal. 

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