Optical Dish Carving

Heliodor - optical dish carving
The combination of concave cuts and traditional faceting is a hallmark of fantasy cutting, pioneered by Bernd Munsteiner. Optic or optical dishes are concave facets, like tiny bowls, carved into gems. This is a technique used by Michael Dyber, the celebrated gem sculptor who has influenced many fantasy cutters. “Yellow Beryl (Heliodor),” 11.12 cts, Tajikistan, faceted and sculpted, featuring optical dishes. © All That Glitters. Used with permission.

My interest in gem carving started in December, 1994, when I saw a picture of Michael Dyber’s winning entry in the 25th German Awards for Jewelry & Precious Gems in Idar-Oberstein, a 55.65-ct ametrine featuring his signature concave facets, “Dyber Optic Dishes.” I was in awe of what he had done. For a year and a half, I tried to figure out how he had accomplished this.

I want to share what I’ve learned about optical dish …

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