My previous practical experiments with the Red Hand concept have yielded some results that emerged as stable throughout:
- People positively loved red and reddish appearances of my arm and hand to death. Some screamed with joy, some immediately wanted to touch it or did touch it, and when I was not wearing it, they demanded that I wear it. This response was stable over more than about 10 months and affected children and adults alike. This reaction confirms published results of Cloerkes and a color theory by Rudolf Steiner.
- The same did never even once happen with a skin colored socket. With a skin colored hand, children and some adults reacted with visible distress. One guy sweated, one kid screamed, and other reactions were not as pronounced but negative as well. Yet I was also complimented in a distanced manner as to how neat the Regal prosthesis hand looked. This reaction confirms published results by Cloerkes.
- A clean or very clean appearance seemed to be paramount. Self-made appearances, worn down appearances and so on were not met with a lot of enthusiasm (even though I really like them). Surely people were intrigued by realistic or otherwise artsy appearances but it had to be a clean and well made prosthesis in order to yield positive acceptance. So here we have a difference between my and other people's preference. The brushed down look was almost stressful to some. I found it extremely cool but it was stressful to some. And no one volunteered compliments for that type of design.
- I do not want a pre-defined look. So I don't want my arm to resemble hardwood, a leopard print or any other clear well-known and established point of reference. Instead I want this to be free of such anchors but - similar to Jacques Monestier's approach - some piece of loving art that invites to be examined rather than a piece of healthcare that must be stared at.
So for this round of new sockets (...my arm shrank...), I discussed material options in depth with my prosthetic technician. He then tried to work with my specifications and here is what came out of it.
Carbon fiber and brick red epoxy
Black carbon fiber and red epoxy were added and the result was cast to be as glossy as possible. The result is a red-brownish patterned glossy appearance. Depending on the light, a crocodile leather like apperance, a synthetic appearance or some hard to identify appearance results. As I had experimentally evaluated animal skin lookalikes to go to the direction of a 'red paw', this is a really good result.
The hand - that looks great with it - is a Becker Imperial hand. The wrist that features a wrist-band-looking wide rim that acts as quick release lever is the current MSM 0.2rev model (currently under revision again).