Inventing a Trick That’s Already Been Invented

I always try to keep up with the new magic that’s out and came across this trick:   To me this guy was inspired by David Copperfield’s license plate trick, without the kicker of the appearing car.  This is a more practical way of doing the trick for 99.9% of performers and a smart method. … Continue reading “Inventing a Trick That’s Already Been Invented”

I always try to keep up with the new magic that’s out and came across this trick:

 

To me this guy was inspired by David Copperfield’s license plate trick, without the kicker of the appearing car.  This is a more practical way of doing the trick for 99.9% of performers and a smart method.

 

Whenever I see a marketed trick I try to think of ways I can make them unique to me.  I do two things:

 

  1. Think of a different method:  A new method can lead to a trick that feels different to the audience.
  2. Think of a new presentation:  A completely different presentation will give you a unique feeling trick.

 

So what would I do with this trick (keep in mind this is trick is already a variation of an existing trick)?

 

Let’s start with method.  Instead of using a flip chart, why not use the TOXIC force?  Now you’ve eliminated the flip board and a visual, so the trick now won’t look like the trick above.  Now you’ve got two tricks that simply just license plate predictions.

 

Next let’s get into presentations.  The video doesn’t really have a presentation, and it’s been soo long since I’ve seen David Copperfield do his, that I don’t remember what his was, we have a pretty easy starting point.  Since we’re using a calculator, you could talk about buying a car and how they talk about all the numbers.

 

Now that we’ve got a method and a presentation, there’s one last hurdle, getting a license plate that has only numbers and no letters.  A google search showed me that all modern plates have both numbers and letters, so buying a used plate on ebay won’t work.  However another search showed me that you can have custom “novelty” plates made!

 

Now we’ve got the routine, the props and method…we’ve got a brand new trick, one that’s unique!

 

Louie

 

Always Bring It!

I was chatting with Jeffrey Tam in Las Vegas about performing on Fool Us.  He was saying that going on the show just to get on TV isn’t why you should go on that show, you should go on the show to WIN!  I totally agree with him, that’s the goal, if you just want … Continue reading “Always Bring It!”

I was chatting with Jeffrey Tam in Las Vegas about performing on Fool Us.  He was saying that going on the show just to get on TV isn’t why you should go on that show, you should go on the show to WIN!  I totally agree with him, that’s the goal, if you just want TV footage, there are plenty of places to get that.

 

One of the things that drives me nuts is when people go on TV and do sponge balls.  That footage isn’t the best simply because bookers, especially bookers who deal with good talent have seen it.  That video footage does nothing to help you get gigs above local level.  Sure it may help you be “king of the birthday parites” but it won’t help you make the move to children’s festivals, or performing arts centers.

 

What video of your show makes it unique?  Recently I was on a local TV show and I did material that set me apart from other magicians in my market!

 

The moral of the story is when you are on TV, don’t waste it on doing stuff that will just be white noise to bookers.

 

Louie

Be Content Creator, Not a Content Consumer

Right now we live in a world that needs content.  With YouTube, Facebook, etc the amount of content that gets consumed is amazing.   Sure you can go on Instagram and do the snapchange and do alright, but that’s all it will be in just alright.  We’ve all seen it…   So the trick is to … Continue reading “Be Content Creator, Not a Content Consumer”

Right now we live in a world that needs content.  With YouTube, Facebook, etc the amount of content that gets consumed is amazing.   Sure you can go on Instagram and do the snapchange and do alright, but that’s all it will be in just alright.  We’ve all seen it…

 

So the trick is to create content, how do you do that? One easy way is to create around topical things like news, or a holiday.  For example the other day President Trump said the reason we’re having out of control wild fires is that we aren’t “raking the forest“.   That was my starting point for this quick trick:

 

I have less than an hour into the trick, and most of the time was spent driving to the hardware store and back to make the appearing rake and then walking to and from the park to record this.

 

Here’s an example of some content I created based on a holiday a couple years ago:

 

It’s not hard to create this way.  The downside is that when you do this stuff has a shelf life.  Material based on the news is a few days to a few weeks. If you create content based on a holiday, you’ve got a week, but you can recycle it every year or every few years.

So go out and think of a trick!

Dusting Off Tricks

I’ve been fascinated by the Any Card at Any Number trick since I was a teenager.  I’ve developed and published several methods of doing it.  I was going through an old notebook and found this version that I was doing in the early 2000’s   This version has a few interesting things going for it, … Continue reading “Dusting Off Tricks”

I’ve been fascinated by the Any Card at Any Number trick since I was a teenager.  I’ve developed and published several methods of doing it.  I was going through an old notebook and found this version that I was doing in the early 2000’s

 

This version has a few interesting things going for it, like the imaginary deck premise and that’s it’s pretty easy to do.  It also have a few things not going for it, like having to use the “magician’s choice” force for the suit selection, the deck can’t be handled by the spectator and it’s uses for another trick and very limited (but not impossible).

 

This version I call the Imaginary Card at Any Number and will be published in an upcoming issue of Vanish Magazine.  Hopefully someone will use the trick as a jumping off point for their version of the trick.  For me the method for this trick had me work to eliminate the weaknesses and come up with a better versions. My current version doesn’t have the weaknesses of this trick.

 

Louie

Your Tricks Gotta Be Seen!

I’m frequently asked about why the Evaporation’s standard version is orange liquid. The reason for this is simple, it’s easy to be seen. Rarely will you have an orange background that you are performing in front of, so the color won’t disappear into whatever is behind you.   Using things like cola, which is a … Continue reading “Your Tricks Gotta Be Seen!”

I’m frequently asked about why the Evaporation’s standard version is orange liquid. The reason for this is simple, it’s easy to be seen. Rarely will you have an orange background that you are performing in front of, so the color won’t disappear into whatever is behind you.

 

Using things like cola, which is a dark brown be hard to see with a dark background, or using milk in an elementary school gym against a white wall make seeing the trick difficult. That’s why I settled on Orange.

 

You need to think about this stuff with all of your magic.  For example I love the idea of cups and balls, more specifically cup and ball(s).  So a chop cup would fall in this category.  My marketed trick Cee-Lo (Available from www.hocus-pocus.com) which uses 3 dice and a cup has some clever work on the final loads.

 

Here’s a video of Cee-Lo:
The problem is that the action happens on the table top, and if you are are a raised stage the audience is looking up at the bottom of the table and can’t see what’s happening.

 

There are a couple of solutions to this:

  1. Build your table at an angle, so the front edge is lower than the back.
  2. Use video projection onto a screen.
  3. Create a routine where none of the action happens on a table top.

The first two are pretty simple solutions, however how practical they are will depend on the venues you perform in.  The third one is the one that interests me.  You are now walking into fairly uncharted waters.  Aside from Ball and Cone, the only other cup and ball type trick that happens in the hands is Axel Hecklau’s Just a Cup.

 

Axel’s routine is great, but I want to come up with my own take on an in the hands cup and ball routine.  So my starting point was a baseball cap, which hand a brim that I can hold on to and a large ball, that’s an inch and a half in diameter.  All of the action now happens at chest level and it plays much larger due to the bigger props.

 

This routine is still in its early phases, hopefully it’ll work out.  Once it’s closer to being finished, I’ll start sharing some video of it.

 

The point of this post is simple:  Look at the tricks you do and think you about what the audience can actually see!

 

Louie

Vanishing Bird Cage

I’ve always loved the vanishing birdcage, ever since I was a teenager and was told about Bert Allerton doing in close up while table hopping.  Then I saw Blackstone Jr. do the vanishing birdcage where all the kids put their hands around the cage, I’d seen Lance Burton do it with his round cage.  However … Continue reading “Vanishing Bird Cage”

I’ve always loved the vanishing birdcage, ever since I was a teenager and was told about Bert Allerton doing in close up while table hopping.  Then I saw Blackstone Jr. do the vanishing birdcage where all the kids put their hands around the cage, I’d seen Lance Burton do it with his round cage.  However the one that really did amazed me was seeing Billy McComb do the vanishing birdcage.  Here’s a video of it:

What made Billy’s version different was that he did his whole act and ended with the cage. He didn’t have that cramped posture, he had a full range of motion. I don’t think Billy was the first person to use a take up reel for the birdcage, however he’s the one that made an impact on me.

Over the years I’ve owned several take up reels, including the one that was sold with the Billy McComb vanishing birdcage set.  Right now I own a funky one that was made in Germany.

If you don’t know what a take up reel is and how you would use it for a vanishing birdcage, it’s pretty simple.  All it does is shorten the length of the string on the pull.  That’s it.  But that simple little thing makes all the difference in the world!

Having used a take up reel, the thing I didn’t like about them was the weight of them.  They are metal and heavy.  For someone like Billy who it appears did the cage at the end of an act, the weight is probably less of a problem then when used by someone doing a 45-60 min show.

Recently I got a 3D printer and started playing with it and ended up designing a take up reel. This is a lot lighter because it’s plastic.  I’ve been using this for months and I will say, I think I’ve finally come up with a solution for me to do the birdcage in my show!

Using a take up reel isn’t just for the birdcage, there’s a lot of cool stuff you can do with them.  I’m not going to go into detail about other tricks you can do with them because there’s soo many.  I’m just glad I came up with a solution that works for me.

Louie

Trick I think would be cool…

A magic trick that’s been in my head and I think would be cool is to have an empty coffee cup on the table. You pour coffee, milk and sugar into it and Then mix it up with a spoon. when you turn it over black coffee comes out which you pour into a small … Continue reading “Trick I think would be cool…”

A magic trick that’s been in my head and I think would be cool is to have an empty coffee cup on the table. You pour coffee, milk and sugar into it and Then mix it up with a spoon. when you turn it over black coffee comes out which you pour into a small glass. Then you tip it over second time and milk comes and finally the third time pouring out dry sugar, leaving you with an empty cup.

I don’t have a method for this yet.

I think the evaporation gimmick would help out in achieving this effect. I also think the spoon would be a good way to steal or add something into the cup.

If you have any ideas feel free to let me know!

Evaporation Ina Dove Act

I’ve always thought the Evaporation trick would make a great addition to a dove act. Here’s a little sequence that would run about a minute: You show three handkerchiefs empty by shaking them out one at a time. Then bunch them up and then a bottle of milk appears. You do a few flair / … Continue reading “Evaporation Ina Dove Act”

I’ve always thought the Evaporation trick would make a great addition to a dove act. Here’s a little sequence that would run about a minute:

You show three handkerchiefs empty by shaking them out one at a time. Then bunch them up and then a bottle of milk appears. You do a few flair / juggling moves with the bottle. Finally you pour a bit of the milk into your fist and toss it out into the audience and mid air it turns into a dove!

The above sequence is pretty simple all it would require is the THIS Bottle Production and a Evaporation Bottle (milk version). Then you’d need to learn to do a few flair moves with the bottle and how to do a sleeve toss with a dove.

Louie
www.EvaporationTrick.com

Evaporation with Solids

Did you know you can modify you Evaporation gimmick and put into a jar that would hold solids like jellybeans? So the effect would be you show a tub of jelly beans and pour some into a paper bag. You blow up the bag and pop it and the jelly beans turn into confetti! Or … Continue reading “Evaporation with Solids”

Did you know you can modify you Evaporation gimmick and put into a jar that would hold solids like jellybeans?

So the effect would be you show a tub of jelly beans and pour some into a paper bag. You blow up the bag and pop it and the jelly beans turn into confetti!

Or how about a tub of popped popcorn and turns into popcorn kernels?

Confetti Mod…

You can make little changes to the bottle to enable you to steal various things.  For example if you want to turn the juice to confetti here’s a quick little mod for the bottle: That’s an easy mod that will take you 5 mins to do and is non-permanent, so if it doesn’t work for … Continue reading “Confetti Mod…”

You can make little changes to the bottle to enable you to steal various things.  For example if you want to turn the juice to confetti here’s a quick little mod for the bottle:

That’s an easy mod that will take you 5 mins to do and is non-permanent, so if it doesn’t work for you it’s no big deal to scrape off the glue.

Louie
http://www.EvaporationTrick.com