One of the tricks that I’ve been working on this month is Four Nightmares, which is a rope trick.
Here’s the rope routine that I’m doing:
-Show long and short rope I have a long piece of rope and a….Albino worm. I’ll do four tricks, and I’ve given each a cool name. -Ropes become the same size I call this the equalizer! I had a lady tell me she didn’t like that because it made her feel stupid. -tie the two equal ropes together If you don’t know how a trick works, that means I’m doing my job. I don’t understand how an airplane flies, but when we land I clap for the pilot! -move knot to one side of the rope, untie it to reveal the short rope I call trick number two, the de-wormer! -put away the small rope. Trick number three… -tie the double knot a double knot… -slide the knot off the rope to reveal the circle of rope I call that OOhhh whaaat?! -put the loop onto the rope Trick number four, I call it…the end -reveal the loop become part of the single rope
This particular trick is doing a trick for the sake of doing a magic trick. There’s not really anything about me, my life or a point of view in the trick. I think that sometimes you need that stuff in the show, just a fun trick.
This routine is still in its very early stages for me, so we’ll see what happens with it in the future.
Last week was the final fair of my summer season. This fair is also two weeks, so I try to work on as much stuff as possible while I’m at this one as it’s my last chance to do a lot of shows in a short period.
One of the things I was working on is Tenyo’s Four Nightmares rope trick.
This routine is good, but I think it has the same weak spot as most rope routines, and that’s the lack of an ending. There’s no definite punctuation at the end of the trick.
Oh, I took out one of the phases of the routine and that’s the 3rd effect where you tie a knot and it disappears. It’s the weakest part of the routine and removing it doesn’t hurt the routine.
For the routine, I’m presenting it as simply that I’m going to do four tricks with the rope. I then name each trick as I do them. The fourth and final trick I call it “the end” and that has helped me sell the end of the routine. I’m not 100% happy with framing the routine this way, but it’s a starting point.
Also, if I’m going to keep doing this routine, I need to learn to make the gimmicks. The white rope will get very dirty very quickly…especially out on the fairgrounds!
A couple of weeks I wrote a post about making a themed What’s Next prop that’s a road sign with bullet holes in it.
I ordered a cheap What’s Next prop that was black with white spots. I peeled off the stationary white spots so I was left with a black metal board and put an arrow that I cut out of vinyl sticker paper on both sides of the board. Then added the two bullet hole stickers to one side and five to the other side. For the gimmicks, I simply added the stickers to the tops of gimmicks that came with the set and trimmed them around the stickers.
It came out looking pretty good and works great!
Here’s what I don’t like about it: It’s a prop that pretends to be something in real life, but isn’t. Ideally it would look more like this:
However if I used a sign that was more like that, I’m worried that the bullet holes would be harder to see against the text. The simple design that I used makes the bullet holes clearly visible. It was a choice that had to be made, a realistic sign or visibility and I chose visibility.
Sometimes during my morning writing I will explore ideas for tricks like What’s Next that uses the spot card. This is routine where the number of spots on each side keep changing, then there’s a sucker explanation followed by a series of surprises. The prop in that trick resembles a domino and Norm Nielsen made a version of it that has the correct color combination for a domino. Someone else had made a version of one that’s a cookie with the chocolate chips being the spots.
What’s next is a trick that is perfect for trying to theme, you just need to figure out what the spots are. They could be zits on a teenagers face, or my favorite idea I came up with, bullet holes on a road sign. If you’ve driven in the rural USA, seeing a road sign that’s been shot up is common.
It’d should be simple to make this. Just use bullet hole stickers for the spots on the what’s next card, and cover the white board with art that’s a street sign. I’m going to imagine that the gimmick’s black art to hide the magnets would still work with the bullet holes.
If you wanted to do some work, you could do a kicker ending by building a flap card gaff to one side of it to reveal something.
Honestly I’ll probably never use this, so feel free to make one up. Creating things you know aren’t for you is still a good creative excercise!
Right now I’m a couple days deep into over a week off, no shows until next Wednesday! While enjoying my time off, I came across a video of Doc Docherty‘s routine for the Gozinta Boxes. The Gozinta Boxes were created by Lubor Fielder and the effect is a red box fits inside a black box, … Continue reading “Great Effect for a Bad Trick…”
Right now I’m a couple days deep into over a week off, no shows until next Wednesday! While enjoying my time off, I came across a video of Doc Docherty‘s routine for the Gozinta Boxes. The Gozinta Boxes were created by Lubor Fielder and the effect is a red box fits inside a black box, then the black box fits inside the red box.
Here’s a video of David Ginn doing the Gozinta Box:
What I don’t like about the trick in it’s purest form, is that it’s more of a puzzle than a magic trick and really lacks a magic moment. Then I think Tenyo put out ParaBox which had the production of sponge balls, which I think took the trick from a puzzle to a magical puzzle!
Here’s Paul Daniels doing Parabox:
Comparing the Parabox to the Gozinta Box, I feel it’s a huge leap. The thing that’s lacking with the Parabox is producing sponge balls isn’t a huge production. You are making something that can be squished down appear. A sponge ball is better than no production, but something solid would be much better. Let’s get back to Doc Docherty, and his version called In Through the Outbox, which you can watch below:
The productions of the solid pieces of metal are great and takes the routine to an impossible level. I think it’s a great addition to the trick and really cool! One thing that I’d change with it is the pacing of the productions and do them one at a time. I think it’s be stronger to produce one block get the reaction, prove it’s solid and then produce the second one. Once you’ve established what the first one is, you don’t need to prove the second one is solid. However as is I think it’s a great magic trick.
If my roving consisted of more than an deck of cards, a few coins and the shell game, this is a trick that I’d do!
This week I was on the road performing for a few days. Earlier in the week Barry Mitchell in his Facebook group posted a picture of some kids magic tricks that Target was selling for dollar each. At one point I was at a Target so I picked them up. Two of the tricks that … Continue reading “Four Dollar Routine…”
This week I was on the road performing for a few days. Earlier in the week Barry Mitchell in his Facebook group posted a picture of some kids magic tricks that Target was selling for dollar each. At one point I was at a Target so I picked them up.
Two of the tricks that Target sells are the Ball and Vase and the Burglar Box. The Burglar Box is a clear box that a ball penetrates the bottom of to end up inside. Unlike the Ball and Vase, the Burglar box isn’t the best first trick for a kid as it will take a fair amount of practice to do well.
My initial idea was to buy three of the Burglar Boxes and do some sort of shell game with them. I bought three of them and three Ball and Vases. Here’s the little routine I came up with:
It’s a decent little routine for $4, and a fun little exercise to try to make more out of a beginner’s trick.
Last week I was hanging out with some magicians and while we were jamming we stumbled upon an idea. What we were doing with this idea at the restaurant wasn’t very sophisticated, but we got the general idea down. The next morning I got up and made a quick 3D model of what we wanted … Continue reading “From an Idea to a Physical Trick in Under 18 Hours”
Last week I was hanging out with some magicians and while we were jamming we stumbled upon an idea. What we were doing with this idea at the restaurant wasn’t very sophisticated, but we got the general idea down.
The next morning I got up and made a quick 3D model of what we wanted the trick to look like. I printed it, and it wasn’t quite right. I banged out a Version 2 and it still needed a little bit of tweaking. Within 18 hours of having the idea, and me sleeping about half of that time, I had an ideal working model!
In their current form, they look like a Tenyo Magic product and the next step will be to have them made in metal.
Being able to produce these in a physical form tells me a lot about the idea and how it will actually work. Versus it basically dying in a notebook. Knowing how to use a 3D printer is a game changer for magicians!