A couple of weeks ago I was performing at a fair and another act mentioned she was going through a book called The Artist’s Way. This is a book about how to be more creative. It’s more than a book, it’s a series of things you need to do and it’s broken down by week. It doesn’t feel like a lot work, but it is. There’s a lot of writing that needs to happen. I’m not afraid of writing, so it’s not as daunting as it may be for me. If you’re someone who really hasn’t done much writing, it may be a little bit of a challenge.
I’m only on day three, and the book gives you things to do by the week, so I’m on week 1. The first week seems to be identifying the things that are holding you back, and while I did know some of the things that I’ve brought up in my writing, there were a couple of surprises as well.
This book has a pretty hippy vibe. There’s nothing wrong with that, but I guess that writing style may turn some people off. So far, I’m down with this book, but it’s a twelve week thing, so we’ll see how I feel by the end (assuming I make it to the end).
One of the fun things work this week with World of Wonders this week is that I’m part of cast of performers. That means my duties are more than just my act. I’ve got a small part in another act. I pop my head through the curtain and say a couple of lines. This is something I’ve never really had to do before, aside from performing with my daughter.
In the middle of the run, I had another performer have an idea for my spoon act. This idea would use a second person to introduce my giant spoon. The idea took off! Backstage we then started riffing and before I knew it, it was a fairly fleshed out bit!
This is something that I can’t normally do in my spoon act, however I also don’t know that I’ll be doing the spoon act much longer as part of it probably isn’t very good for my health.
The important thing is even though I don’t know the future of the spoon act (I took it out of my show about 3 years ago), I’m still working on it. It’s got a brief life in the show for 9 days, but I still want it to grow!
Well, today is Thanksgiving in the United States, and I’m going to remind you that holidays are a great way to be creative. Here’s a trick that I made for Thanksgiving 4 or 5 years ago:
It’s an easy way to take an existing trick, theme the prop and you’ve got a unique feeling routine. Every now and then I take a look at the list of “National Day’s” and use that as my starting point to work on new routines. Usually these routines aren’t for my show, they are a creative exercise.
There are many points in my career where I look back and am amazed at where dopey ideas I’ve had for my show have taken me. That’s one of the secrets to my career, not being afraid to try things.
What’s your crazy idea?
What’s the next step to making it a reality?
One of the things I’ve learned is developing ideas is a series of peaks and valleys. Once you solve one problem, you are frequently then greeting with another problem. whoever can power through all all of the challenges wins.
I remember chatting with Brian from Creative Magic about the Change Cap that he put out. The Change Cap was a change bag built into a baseball cap. Brian told me that tons of magicians told him the idea of a change bag built into a hat was their idea. He would then ask if they ever made one, and no one had every successfully made one.
Having and idea and actually making the idea happen are frequently two very different things! Usually the idea is the easy part, making it a reality is the real work!
What are you doing to stay creative right now? I’ve got several outlets for creativity, however on of them is new to me. During the self quarantine, my brothers and our families have a virtual dinner once a week. Last week they asked me to do a cooking show, so I’ve been working on that for fun.
One of the things that I came up with was to turn a garlic clove into chopped garlic. The simple solution is to use a thumb tip. I didn’t really want my hands covered in garlic, so I thought about wearing gloves and a then this I covered a thumbtip with the end of glove and it worked great!
Forcing yourself outside of your comfort zone is a great way to get yourself thinking creatively! If the cooking show turns out watchable, I’ll share it here.
Today is Valentines Day and an easy day to generate social media content for. Think of a trick using a paper heart, a flower, or a valentine and you’ve got good content for you social sites. You aren’t limited to Valentines Day, you can do this for any of the wacky national holidays. You can … Continue reading “Easy Magic Content Generator…”
Today is Valentines Day and an easy day to generate social media content for. Think of a trick using a paper heart, a flower, or a valentine and you’ve got good content for you social sites. You aren’t limited to Valentines Day, you can do this for any of the wacky national holidays. You can find a list at: https://nationaldaycalendar.com/
In the past I’ve done tricks for things like National Light Bulb Day. If you simply visit the list once a month and look for days the next month you’ll have plenty of chances for an idea for a trick. I just took a peek at March and here’s some ideas:
- National Pig Day: Get 4 small toy pigs and do a Coins Across
- National Cheese Doodle Day: Broken and restored cheese doodle
- National Cold Cuts Day: Card to sandwich
- National Oreo Day: Do Bizarro’s Over Stuft trick
Those are just a few ides, and I didn’t go deep into the month. Take a peek and start generating ideas!
Creativity isn’t something you can force, but there are things you can do to stimulate it. Lately I’ve felt pretty uncreative, however I’ve had a tough performing schedule which didn’t leave a lot of time to play with ideas. Then somehow like magic, the last couple of days I’ve had some great ideas. The main … Continue reading “Creative Funk…”
Creativity isn’t something you can force, but there are things you can do to stimulate it. Lately I’ve felt pretty uncreative, however I’ve had a tough performing schedule which didn’t leave a lot of time to play with ideas. Then somehow like magic, the last couple of days I’ve had some great ideas.
The main thing that changed in the last few days was that I opened myself up to new ideas. I starting looking for them, not waiting for them to pop into my head. Taking control of creativity is the first step to being creative.
Another big change was that I was playing with things a bit more. I’m back to working through card tricks at night while sitting on the couch while my wife watches TV. Sure going through a book on card tricks isn’t exactly creative, but it’s making my brain learn new things, and that opens up my brain to forming new ideas.