Sometimes there's just no substitute for a close-up lens...
But it needs a tripod, and very controlled lighting, a fussy bother that only gets done sometimes.
This Netsuke is a bit larger than a walnut, and they were used by Japanese men to control their kimono drawstrings.
"Banded iron", a 2.7 billion year old slice of sea bottom showing precipitated iron, a result of the initial production of free oxygen on earth.
Some copper ore can be quite beautiful!
Pink tourmaline, one of the two most common colours of toumaline.
Green tourmaline, the other most common colour.
Amazonite. The green comes from a small amount of lead and water in the uncommon feldspar mineral.
Iron pyrite interlocked cubes. From a mine in Spain, the pyrite cubes grow slowly, and can overgrow smaller ones.
Sadly, this one had to be glued back together. Note to self: not suitable for handling by a 2 year-old.
Iron pyrite "sand dollars" growing in slate.