One of the ways to create new methods or routines for magic tricks is to take an existing trick and remove what you don’t like about it. We’ll start with a trick that I don’t like, and that’s Peter Kane’s Wild Card. There’s a lot I don’t like, it mostly is how redundant the trick is, and it lacks an ending. It goes, and the ending is all the cards have changed to the same card, but there’s not punctuation on it.
In Jon Racherbaumer‘s book, The Wild Card Kit, there are a couple of interesting premises. More importantly there are a couple of interesting moves and sequences that take the trick past it’s most basic level.
One notable exception is Eric DeCamp’s version of Wild Card called Jokers are Wild Are Wild. In this version the cards values end up being a blackjack hand and for a finish the cards turn into money. This puts a theme on the trick and a finish that punctuates the routine.
So…what am I going to bring Wild Card?
I’m not sure.
What I don’t like about wild card is:
How redundant the sequence is
How it uses a packet of all the same card
How it doesn’t have an ending
The first two things I don’t like are an easy fix, however the third one will take some work. For the first two, I’ll vary the moves a little bit and for the second I can make a packet of the gimmicks that use different cards, not all the same values. However an ending that makes sense might be harder…
When I had gotten my wisdom teeth pulled a while ago, I kept the teeth that were removed. For years they’ve sat on my shelf doing nothing. Well I did donate one of them to a friend’s oddity museum, but other than that they just sit there.
While not the greatest trick, here’s something I did yesterday:
I had some black paper on my desk, then saw the teeth and decided that would be a good trick to do. I think I may reshoot it and put it out on social media at some point.
When I posted the nut and bolt trick the other day I mentioned that what I posted wasn’t quite what I had envisioned the trick to look like. Ideally it would be a penetration type effect, with the nut penetrating through the thread of the bolt.
I just recorded a quick video of sort of what I’d like it to look like:
That video isn’t exactly what I’d like it to look like, but it’s pretty close. I think that makes for a more interesting effect than a visual animation of the nut unscrewing itself. Moving the nut while it’s covered by your fingers allows the spectators mind to fill in the whats happening may make it more magical.
The important thing is that if you have a gimmick, you should play with it. Figure out what else you can do with it besides simply what the instructions say.
In yesterday’s blog post I wrote about a four ace production that I saw on social media and why it wasn’t good. This morning I’m going into my social media and found a four ace production from about a year ago. If I remember correctly this is from Principia by Harapan Ong.
Here’s why the is a better trick that the one that I shared yesterday:
I’m talking, it fills the dead space a bit better
No procedural shuffling
You get an ace production right away
The final ace production is magical and puts an punctuation on the trick
Is the ace trick that I did the best? No, however it’s way better than the one that I shared yesterday. Think about what you’re sharing before you put it out there.
For the Polaroids to Envelope magic trick I’m working on, the last technical step is to clean up the handling. The initial handling had three Tenkai Vanishes, which is fine, but redundant. I also think that if you do the same false transfer over and over, you need a convincer to show both hands empty.
Here’s the tweaked handling:
One thing that I decided with showing both hands empty was that I didn’t want to make both hands being empty part of the vanish. I wanted to show both hands, just not show the dirty hand as a “moment” of the trick. In the video you’ll notice that I show both hands as I turn the envelope over.
The technical end is finished for now. The technical part is something that may evolve over time, and something that’s never completely done.
Oh man, we’re hitting the homestretch here! A few days ago I started writing about wanted to do Goshman’s Cards Thru Newpaper and how it has morphed into a completely new magic trick.
The final change to the physical props was to get rid of the jumbo card that the pictures reappeared under. I was texting my friend Terry Godfrey, who is a very smart magician and we came up with the idea of changing the jumbo card to an envelope that starts out holding the pictures.
I ended up making the envelope, so it’s not a standard size. It’s a little bit smaller than the jumbo card that I was using.
At this point I have an original magic trick. The next step is to clean up the handling a little bit.
I found the trailer for the upcoming season of Masters of Illusion and you get to see a trick I invented at the 27 second mark:
One of the great things about creating original material, not just presentations is that when you are pitching acts to a TV show you don’t have to worry if something has been done before. This applies to more than just TV, it’s a huge advantage for variety shows as well. You don’t need to fight over who gets to do what trick.
One of the worst reasons to keep trying to do a trick is because you are in love with the method. I’ve got a trick in my show that I love the method more than the audience loves the trick. I think the trick has something going for it, it’s just a matter of figuring out what that is.
The reason that I’m still trying to make Silk Thru Coathanger work:
I’ve written about this trick a lot on this blog, and it’s still a work in progress. If I was rating my routine for it, I’d give it the grade of C. However a while ago I added a move, took out a move and rearranged the sequence. Those changes moved it up from a D to a C. I’d be really happy if I could get it up to a B.
Recently I did some workshopped it with some other performers and we came up with some ideas for how to frame it. We’ll see how those play…
With the west coast of the United States on lockdown and practicing “social isolation“, I’ve been playing with some ideas. I’ve always wanted to do a coin thru glove like the Lubor Fielder trick where you push a coin through a sheet of latex. When I’ve tried it with a latex glove it never worked … Continue reading “Coin Thru Glove!”
With the west coast of the United States on lockdown and practicing “social isolation“, I’ve been playing with some ideas. I’ve always wanted to do a coin thru glove like the Lubor Fielder trick where you push a coin through a sheet of latex. When I’ve tried it with a latex glove it never worked out right.
One of the things that people are doing when they aren’t at home is wearing latex gloves, and I sat down to solve the problem of putting a coin through them. Here’s what I came up with:
As far as method goes, it’s very different from Lubor’s trick, however it’s a bit more practical to do and repeat…but the angles are worse. I’m glad I came up with a solution, so whenever I look at latex gloves, I don’t think of how to put a coin through them.
The other day I was hanging out with a magician friend, we were working on something not magic trick related. At some point we always end up goofing around with magic. and that’s when the good ideas come out. Unfortunately this day it was just goofing around. One of the things we were playing with … Continue reading “Play Around…”
The other day I was hanging out with a magician friend, we were working on something not magic trick related. At some point we always end up goofing around with magic. and that’s when the good ideas come out. Unfortunately this day it was just goofing around.
One of the things we were playing with was a bottle cap. Here’s one of the things that we did:
It’s not a great trick, or even that original, however it’s a good example of part of the creative process. It’s just playing with an item and seeing what comes up.