Eek! I was getting a bit impatient with my dorodango, so I decided to leave it out in the open air when I went to work today so I could let it dry out a bit. I returned to it having dry cracks! Note to anyone attempting this: don’t be impatient. Let it dry out slowly.
On the other hand, it does still look pretty cool. I snapped this with my Canon Digital XT and did a bit of tweaking to enhance the contrast and the cracks, and frankly, it looks pretty good. I put it back in a bag and put it in the refrigerator to sit for a half hour. I’m thinking that maybe that will draw some residual water to the surface, and maybe a little more dust rubbing will polish it. I wouldn’t mind if there were some cool looking cracks in it, if the surface was smoothed out.
It’s all an experiment!
Addendum: The center of the worst crack appears to be where the dorodango was the least round. My guess is that as the tension of the drying dorodango would have been evenly distributed if it were perfectly spherical, but the defect caused the stress to bunch up and break through. It’s spent a couple of rounds in the fridge, and the smaller cracks are filling in nicely, the center of the cracking is the only part where you can feel the cracks. I’ll try a few more rounds in the fridge to see what happens.