I loaded nice large photos here. If you have a slow connection, be patient.
The process of building.
Cinnabar is my latest thing. Polymer clay is so good at replicating all sorts of things and cinnabar is no exception.
This scope starts out as a kit with a cardboard tube but rest assured, by the time I'm done, no sign of cardboard can be found. That tube was first covered in scrap polymer clay and baked. Then covered with my own custom blend of clays making that dark red cinnabar color typically seen. Finally sheets of more of that red are laid out on my work surface and deeply textured. Then applied to the scope and baked again. Acrylic paint is then applied and wiped off which helps to define the texture. I've also found that buffing the finished piece really makes the red surface pop.
The stand is my own design and really makes this more of a home decor piece of sculpture you would be proud to display, rather than just an adult quality toy. However, it IS fun to "play with." Nothing wrong with that. First it's a decorative conversation piece, but then go ahead and pick it up. Have a look. I promise you won't get bored easily. I did glue in some foam to the inside of the stand so when you set your scope back in it's cradle it has a nice cushy feel.
And that brings up the inner workings.
This is a three mirror scope so the image you see inside spreads out in all directions. It's called a "dry cell" meaning just that. No oil or fluid of any kind inside the chamber. Also this scope is one solid tube. No end to turn. You simply rotate the entire scope to make the image change.
Dry cell bits will tumble then freeze in place if you hold still. I did upload my original movie clip to YouTube with it's original sound. If you want to hear the bits tumble, click that. (note, I used tape to affix my camera to the scope before it was finished and then rotated the whole camera/scope combo. So part of the crackling you hear is the tape moving against the camera mic. And some wind in there too. Also... it's exactly the same clip as on here. Only difference is the audio.)
The chamber itself being dome shape lets light in from all directions. So if you point directly into a light source, the pieces will be back lit, and the effect is completely different than if you point away from a light source, or just use side lighting.
I used a mix of pieces inside the chamber. Some red plastic bits that come with the kit. But then I added a piece of red swarovski crystal. Some shinny silver tube beads. A few pearlescent round beads. Some opaque dusty rose glass bits, and some wine colored glass beads. There is a small pink rocking horse shape bit inside and every once in awhile you get a view of that.
Please DO watch the video. And that's just a tiny fraction of the possible patterns.