Hello to all Magi. My name is Joel and i have been performing magic for about 25 years. i did start to do proffesional magic until about 8 years ago. its never been a money thing with me but more of a medical thing....long story. anyway i have been a member for several months and just have been busy so i just wanted to say hay.
my story is strong and true. if you want to know then ask. im not shy. magic changed and saved my life. i love the art and respect the ways of it.
ps i am trying to come up with a name for myself. i like Zander as the last name but have no idea of a first name that would link with it. any ideas?
The world’s greatest magicians learned some of the greatest secrets of magic through diligently studying books, perfecting their knowledge and gaining a deeper appreciation for the art. Becoming a magician of great stature required a deep passion for the art and a great deal of commitment. On occasion, learning a single trick would seemingly involve sleepless nights in order to perfect the desired effect and result.
As books were harder to come by, the secrets to magic were better guarded and cherished. Exposing secrets of magic to those seeking a quick and easy way to perform a trick, rather than taking the time and effort put forth by true magicians, was frowned upon. Taken from an article written by Geo Schulte in the Magical Bulletin of February 1921, it was written as follows:
“The exposer is worse than a criminal. He is a fool. He not only pulls down the standing of his art; he pulls down himself and his whole profession. He scuttles the ship in which he himself is afloat. Nothing is so easy as to expose a clever magical effect; and nothing is so hard as to put that particular effect back among the fascinating and mystifying problems of magic, when once the secret has been exposed to the general public.”
Modern technology has allowed the exposure of such secrets, allowing everyone and anyone to access some of the most valued techniques of the trade. No longer does one need to spend time and effort in learning the many various ways to perform a trick, they merely need to do nothing more than mimic another imposter desecrating this fine art. Internet now serves as cliff notes to magic books, providing a quick easy fix. Because of the over-exposure of the secrets to magic, due mainly to internet sites such as YouTube, the value of the art of magic has diminished; the mystery has begun to lose its touch, over-popularizing techniques, leaving few ideas original and leaving many without a sense of amazement or astonishment.
Here's the first magic contest announcement you've all been waiting for!
We're gonna kick our Fall 2012 contest series off with a bang and give away one of our biggest prizes right off the bat.
That's right, Jamie D. Grant's "Industrial Revelation" is up for grabs, along with Jamie's latest: "The Vault" with a deck of the sold out Limited Edition Red JAQKs from Theory 11 thrown in (Note: the Vault and Red JAQKs contest is now closed.) Industrial Revelation is still up for grabs!
This is a little update plus kinda of a question thaqt has been asked alot of times,
Awhile back you guys might remember a effect I came up with (Salt Shaker).
A signed coin penitrates a salt shaker filled with salt, Now the idea sprung from a justin Miller effect where he did a move that I practice over and over again then from there I started thinking of other ways to apply that move to different situations. I came up with the method and it looked cool...But looking cool and creating magic are different things. Everyone I know can do some sort of" trick".
But to create magic is much more of heart, paying attention to what people do, how they do it and why?. I learn't this along time ago but didn't apply it to creating, until I paid attention to what all the creators were saying and they all say the samething, I'm not going to tell you that part you have to find it for yourself.
So I started hanging out at resurants watching people((Not creepy at all)) not to watch them but to observe them in how they eat, drink there beverage, hold there fork, spice up therte food.. That was it it hit me after seeing countless people doing them same manurisim time and time again I worked it into my effect to make it that much more natural, make it seem like nothing is happening, because if they do it as habbit there not going to pay much attention to it at all.
Many a times must we have heard someone say the phrase 'breaking in a deck' or calling a deck 'broken in'. But we are not certain on what it means or how to do it. This blog/article is aimed at sedding some light on 'breaking in' a new pack of cards. Please note, that the definitions and processes are highly subjective. What I discuss here is merely my own understanding and the things that I think work best.
WHAT IS BREAKING IN:
Most of the decks of cards used by people are from the USPCC or similar manufacturers who use a special varnish on a deck to make it slippery and/or smooth. Such qualities, although desirable, need a perfect balance. Less slide and the deck clumps. Too smooth and it slips out of the hands. Also, a new deck has a stiff stock. New deck stock is difficult to control in springs, harder to palm and makes sleights difficult. If you have used a new bicycle deck, especially the ones made in USPCC's Cincinnati factory, you'll know that the edges of the deck are also rough and uneven which makes dribbles and riffles a pain.
So here's my first blog entry and I'll try and update at least once a week.
I've been saying thank you to lots of UK celebrities and public figures for all their great work by giving them 'The Gift of Wonder'. So I thought it highly important to say thank you to Paul Zenon... the man who brought street magic to UK television. So here I am on the Street giving Paul Zenon 'The Gift of Wonder'...
This week I also met up with X Factor runner up Andy Abraham who is currently on tour in the UK and has a new album out. I met up with him at the Derngate theatre in Northampton. Andy enjoyed the experience but it couldnt have gone worse! I had a serious problem with my tash! Have a look for yourself...
This is my first blog on the magic network. I found the site because someone I don't believe I've ever met before tweeted at me about it. It seems like a nice resource for magicians/cardists and I hope to use it for years to come. I've been (seriously) practicing magic for about a year and a half. I've stopped actively pursuing magic and begun to focus more heavily on cardistry. I decided to do this because I find cardistry to be more enjoyable than magic (not to say that magic is not enjoyable!) and it's nice to know that a spectator can't say "I know how you did that" which happens to me a lot because I usually preform ACR. When I flourish all the spectators know what I am doing, but I doubt any of them can replicate it. As I said before, I usually preform ACR. I do this because it is so customizable even when you only know a few simple sleights. The same holds true for cardistry but on a much higher level. If you know a few things you can still preform something at least semi-impressive (like the ACR) but when you do something different, it opens up entirely different options and it is easier to do something different. For example, say you are just playing around with cards and you do something different, on accident or on purpose, you basically created a new "sleight" to use in your routines. Going back to magic, creating a new sleight is difficult; there is only so much you can do to control the location of certain cards. In the realm of cardistry I feel there are always more options when creating routines. If you've made it this far, thanks for reading. I hope to post much more in the future.
This is just so that many of you can get to know me abit better and understand what im about. The thing i love about magic is you can do it any were any time and i mean any were weather your on the bus or walking home from work or etc the list is endless but the reson i do magic is the reaction your get from a person when they see a trick and then start jumping around like a little kid on there first birthday party its amazing that you can make people happy by simpley show them somthing that they will nomarlly look for why they are out.Magic is a simble of joy and hope well thats what i think any way hope as in when they see what you can with just a pack of cards and they get that feeling of being truley alive in side and that the world is not just full of paine and haters.Joy is that when that see what you can do they want more if you good and knowing that i can go out there and do a trick for someone that i have never met befor and bring joy and hope to them and bright up there day well thats magic anoth for me .Magic has part of my life for 2 years now and i love it i have a 2 year old little girl that i love to pices shes my number one fan so most of my time is taken up but i will allways have time magic and i am looking to one day be a well known magician and maybe be on tv one that wood be great but for now i am just looking to get vids out there of me doing my stuff and trying to find bars and maybe even get booked for shows and etc well thanks for takeing the time to read this and and hope i can work with you as i hope you can work with thanks yours truley ben breden.
Hello reader, this is going to be a detailed review of the Mind Reading Deck put out by David Blaine & the USPCC.
Box: It comes in a Big box which says 'Mind Reading Deck'. Inside is the card box and an instruction sheet. Inside, is a pretty decent card box. The pattern is that of a standard bicycle box.Has a split spade logo on the front with the word 'Split Spades'. Its a pretty ordinary looking box and should be no problem to deal with. The back has the back of the cards.
Design: It has the Split Spade back. But not the one in the Lions deck, it is the one on the original Split Spades deck which is an inverse of the popular Lions. The back incorporates the marking system, more on that later.
The faces are the same as the Split Spades lions. Court cards with faces of magicians, for instance, the King of Spades is Blaine himself while the Jack of Diamonds is Dan White, the Jack of Spades is Houdini and so on. Has standard spot cards. The jokers are again the same as the Lions deck, only these are colored and have the word 'Joker' written on the edges. The primary Ace of Spades is again the same as the Lions deck only with the Lady covered in a cloth and the ambigrams on the bottom have been removed. Both the Joker and the Ace have really cool optical illusions. This is the original artwork by Mark Stutzman.
In the last few weeks I have been researching wallets. Three I have thought of purchasing (one of course) are the infinity, assassin, and the Aleph wallet. It it unbeknownst to me of which wallet to purchase because there are many more to look at. I looked at many more besides this, but if anyone has suggestions and has reviewed wallets please let me know. I am only knowledgeable in a few areas in of wallets and it is still new to me. Thank you for the assistance.
Push through SOLID STEEL only seconds after reading the easy to understand instructions. No switches, no palming, no sit-ups! Get applause, gain admiration, be a HERO. So easy, your neighbor could do it- only he doesn't know where to buy the secret! A magic trick from the mind that brought you the Anything Is Possible Bottle.
So I go to perform a new trick. It's a card trick and I am nervous. I practiced 100 times so I know I can do the moves it requires, but it's the first time taking it to the public. I relax, put faith in my fingers, and finish the trick without a hiccup. The reactions are good and it opens me up to perform another. I pull out a very simple, practically self working, trick and botch it up - over confident on that one I suppose.
Point is, I am human. I get nervous when performing new material - hell I get nervous period. It's part of performing and it is something you learn to control over time. My way of dealing with being nervous is to realize how many times I made mistakes performing live, and think back how I was able to recover and move on - So, if I already made mistakes and messed up before and I am still here, what the hell do I have to be worried about now? With that said, I find it mildly ironic that, despite all my nervousness with my opening trick, I botch the trick I have the most confidence in performing.
Lesson to be learned: Life is unpredictable, why be nervous about what may never happen?
Before I get into the story of the IMAGINATOR I must go back to my younger days. I came from a family of seven. My Mom, Dad, two brothers, two sisters and I.
Since the whokle begging of my life it has been extremley challenging.
Before I was even born my parents were divorced and split up My dad took off and remarried leaving the five of us with our manic depressant mom who could never really held a job long because of her condition. She was supporting us with food stamps and government aid. It was a treat if we ever stayed in an apartment more then six months. Usually we were evicted because my mother couldn’t pay the rent so there we were again. On the streets of Chicago looking for a place to sleep. Usually we would end up in a church or a homeless shelter. Our mom would send my brothers or sisters out to steal for food. I don’t really remember that part of my life much. Maybe perhaps It was because I was an infant. The other half maybe a mental block. All I can say is despite my mothers mental state, she was a very loving mom. She would hold us and just cry out of desperation, guilt, sorrow and pain.
She really wasn’t in any condition to have kids in the first place. But we all accepted who she was and just went with the flow. One story I was told by my sister was the time when the nuns at the church wanted us to earn our overnight stay so they made us polish the church pews. My sister said it was a very powerful moment in her life becasue as they were polishing the church pews the quire and organ player was rehearsing and thunderouse, beautiful and loud music was heard. I was to young to to rember this. My mother just sat their holding me, rocking me trying to calm me down.
Another story I was told was the one Christmas where we were at an apartment huddled over the stove for heat. We didn’t have any food, no Christmas tree, no presents, NOTHING! we all ended up going to church that morning all sad, depressed that Santa didn’t come to our house. After the service we went back home and experienced the true meaning of Christmas. All the nuns, church members and volunteers went to our apartment while we were at the service. It was like MAGIC! we suddenly had a Christmas tree, a table full of food. And Yes! Presents! We were all so happy that Christmas. Santa didn’t come, ANGELS did. A little time went by and we were still moving around the streets of Chicago. If I could compare our life to a movie I would say the “Pursuit of Happiness” staring Will Smith, would be a good description of how we lived.
A New Home:
Some time later after moving around everywhere the last apartment eviction was the last that finally broke my mom. She couldn’t take it anymore. She was so unhappy that she couldn’t provide for us. She called a Taxi and sent us over to my Dads and step moms apartment . All of the sudden it was like we had a new fresh start. When we arrived at the apartment we all scattered about taking first dibs on what room we wanted. It was like every brother and sister for themselves. We felt somewhat revealed, but at the same time nervous and apprehensive. We didn't know what to expect. We finally had a steady place to live, but we were introducced to new challenges. My father was an alcoholic and my mother-in law was a little OCD millitant and we had to always make sure our rooms were sparkling clean otherwise she would tear up our bedroom and leave it worse then it was in the biggining and I would have to clean it up and start over.
I thought she hated us, but later realized how hard it must of been. I Imagine it must of been hard. No more than six months after you get married and all ot the sudden you have five kids dropped at your door step. Talk about instant family. Despite the ocd stuff, she did care. I mean! she could of just left, just booked, but she didn't.she hung in there and I'm grateful, because who knows what would of happened if our brothers and sisters were all split up and sent to different orphanages.
I remember all of us being dragged to the bar on the early weekends and smelling the distinctive smell of bleach mixed with alchol from when the floor was just freshley mopped and had the wonderful bar smell. The bar was dark, but at the same the bar would have a bright ray of light during the day that would illuminate the billowing cigarette smoke that would dramaticaaly say "You're in a bar" while Frank Sanatra "New York" would be blasting from the juke box.
The regulars at the bar all new us and we new them. They would bring their kids as well and we would all just deal with the fact that we were stuck in this God forsaken palce trying to figure out what the heck to do the rest of the day while our parents drank. The customers at the bar would drop us some change for the powder bowling machines or the juke box and maybe buy us a Slim Jim or two.
I think back now and that seems it was just the common thing to do.
THE MAGIC SHOP!
I don't really remember my dad to much, but the things I do remember is when my dad took me to the magic shop for the first time. It was magic incorporated in Chicago, Il, Ever since then I was hooked. From that day on. I was doing card tricks for the family and friends.
school life was always extremley difficult for me. In Kindrgarden I was diagnosed with ADD "Attention Defecit Disorder" It was very hard to learn things and it caused a great insecurity in me. Many classmates would get good grades and I would just struggle to not get "Fail" on the report card. I think at the time magic was my safe haven, my friend.
In 7th grade I performed in the school talent show. After the show I suddenly had classmates that would tease me even more. I think they were mostley jealouse. Some kids are just bullies and they have to find something worng in everything just to make themselves fell better.
My first show was at Oak Park Park district day camp back in 1979. I did a 45 minute show for $5.00
I loved going to the library to checking out books on magic to further my skills in the arts. One book in particular stood out, a book on Harry Houdini. The book explained some of Houdini’s techniques on escapes. Little did I know that this book would one day save my life.
Later on as an adult I found myself performing magic at theaters, restaurants and birthday parties for audiences of all ages, planting the seeds for the magicians of the future. I always knew to make it in the world of magic you not only had to be talented, but also different. I started to dabble with the idea of coming up with various characters and theming magic routines to the characters.
One of my favorite characters that I created was called "The NerdGician" it was actually created by mistake when my magic mentor at the time Herb Jann asked me to perform at his cocktail party. I decided it would be fun do do a comedy act that involved a nerd which was kind of my alter ego. The charcter didn't talk he just obeyed the voice commands that I scrpited that would play over the sound system. Well the NerdGician was a huge hit at the party and in 1995 the Nerdician was born.
My biggest insperation in magic is David Copperfield. I saw his live show for the first time at the Rosemount theater in Rosemont, Il. After seing his show I thought maybe I should get into illusions. I quickly discovered that illusions can get a little expensive. I decided to clean restaurants as a side income to help pay for the illusions.
At one point I was cleaning two restaurants, had a full time job and was working a restaurant performing close up magic.
It was at this time in my life that the book came into play from so many years ago.
While cleaning a particular restaurant in the middle of the night I went to make a phone call and discovered the phone lines not working. Before I knew it several men clad in ski masks and walkie talkies rushed in at me. They forced me to the floor and used riot cuffs to strap my wrists to the metal pole that ran along the bottom of the bar. My life began to instantly flash before my eyes as I thought this could be my last moments. Then it hit me, the book of escape techniques Harry Houdini used.
With one of the men standing guard over me I tried to relax and implement what I had read. When the others called for him to assist them I knew it was my chance! With a little blood shed I managed to get my hands free, however I noticed the shadow in the hall as the guard came to check on me. I quickly shoved my hands back in and when he turned back I bolted for safety. I ran to a nearby residence where I called the police and a few days later the thugs were apprehended. I could have been killed that night but magic saved my life.
There was no turning back now, I went full force into furthering my skills at magic. Not to mention suddenly found myself deeply active in various worth-while causes. I competed in competitions and receiver awards for my efforts but something was still missing. In 1996 I performed a special stage show where all proceeds were dedicated to the Memorial Foundation in honor of the seven children that perished in the tragic bus accident the year before.
I kept at this for over another decade before I finally realized I was all over the place with my passions. How could I manage to combine all my loves? I did professional DJing, dabbled in web design and of course the magic before I found what I was looking for in the art. Again my mind began toying with various characters and themes but it would be my own little boy who would finally provide the last clue.
As my son grew out of toddle stage and started playing with bigger toys, though by bigger I mean aged hardly size. LEGO provided the inspiration for what would be one of my newest and more creative characters yet, IMAGINATOR Man. Yes it was, to me, a perfect blend of creativity, color, fun and originality! Over the next couple years I honed and polished this idea, molded and created the character from the ground up.
I conjured up every aspect of this character. Original music scores, a hand crafted costume, it was all coming together to make this vision come to life. Trial and error, and a lot of practice and brainstorming was involved to create various illusions using the common Lego pieces found in most kids arsenal of toys. This also allowed me to come up with different ‘public service messages’ using my magic to drive home the intended message.
Moving music, attention capturing visuals, a unique character and magical effects customized to fit what ever it was I wanted to convey. Yes! IMAGINATOR Man was born, though under the name Lego Magic Man. The entire concept was supported and even worked on by my wife and son who helped practice, conceive and even design this moving ideal of mine. I decided to set Halloween 2010 as the debut date to unveil the new character.
Using my skills with videography & web I made several promotional videos to draw attention to the upcoming grand release. Never showing the actual character nor concept, we came up with funny and interesting shorts that left people asking... What is this about? Which was the intended idea. We wanted people to be curious and intrigued enough to find out.
Along the way I had some extraordinary people help me. I would like to give special thanks to Arthur Trace (http://arthurtrace.com/), a fellow magician & friend who’s professional expertise and insight was most helpful. Rev. Festus Johnson (http://www.myspace.com/revflj2) for his friendship and sticking with me even through some of the more off the wall ideas and difficult times. Morrice & Heyse Motors (http://www.barringtonmotors.com/) for donating the awesome muscle cars and location used in some of our videos. Brian Lee (http://makanigirls.com/) for his friendship and help with the audio and technical aspects.
Many of you have asked me what has been going on with TMN the last couple of months. Allow me to quickly explain:
Around the end of September, the company that hosts The Magic Network was hacked. It was not a direct attack on TMN, it was an attack on TMN's webhosting company's servers. Unfortunately, TMN was affected by the hack and many of you were faced with a message saying that TMN was hacked when you tried to access the site.
The webhosting company made their best efforts to restore the site, but unfortunately some things got messed up in the process. I also did my best to bring it back to normal, but it still remained fairly unstable.
As a result, many of you noticed some bugs, and the site went down several times in October.
My Grandmother came in one day, she dropped of this package, inside the package was the Super Egg. Its a small squarish ovale metallic egg. it came with some weird instructions i only learned 1 trick with it. It Is apparently 60 years old, Can someone tell me what this thing is!?
No. no, calm down , Lawrens doesn't work that fast, this is my part 2 follow-up to the blog entry i posted some time ago upon receiving 'Moneypulation' by Lawrens Godon.
Since then I have been practicing hard and getting my head around some of the very powerful moves Lawrens reveals on this DVD, in many cases for the first time. Yes, I could have gone straight out and copied various of the moves and routines directly from the DVD and put them into performance, Lawrens I'm sure would not be offended in the slightest, as he is a very generous teacher and mentor with plenty of time to devote to questions on technique arising from the DVD.
I have to say this particular DVD has had a profound effect on me and my performing style.
The DVD is taught in silence, just incidental music, scene changes, subtitles and a very innovative way of changing from colour to mono-chrome when an important point is reached in the lesson. I work in silence, mime, but that isn't why I like it and why I say its had such an effect on me; The DVD teaches the moves and subtleties in such a way that they can stand alone, they can become weapons in your arsenal rather than moves in a routine, that is the essence of Moneypulation, not a DVD on how to do the routines outlined but how you can create your own routines regardless of bounderies and common pre-conceptions.
You will feel enpowered to take your performance to a whole new level because of how natural the moves feel once you have got them down, nothing on this DVD will take you months or years to master, the simplicity of the moves is mirrored only by the simplicity of the teaching. If you can give this technique a couple of hours a day the moves start to become natural, like a second sense. Your hands will very soon be doing things without any apparent conscious control and that is, as you already know, the essence of pure magic.
Well, thanks guys for your looks and Andrew for your suggestion you were nearly on it.
The mystery item is in fact a 'change Tray' for sponge. I have to thank both Andy at Alkazam Magic UK & the very patient man at the MAGIC CIRCLE London who inspite of my rather dippy description managed to locate a very similar object in their collection dating form the thirties.
A very similar item is still available today to do a dice to ball transposition, though from what I have seen leaves an awful lot to be desired in the construction department, definitely won't stand up to the riggers of performance and look as good as this one in thirty years.
You would show a large sponge ball and the tray both sides, then in turning the tray would then release one of the traps to release x number of tiny sponge balls, whilst vanishing the larger ball. I am sure there would be many other uses using sponge including the dice to ball I mentioned earlier.
This is an unusual item I received recently, please see the pictures I've uploaded.
Picture 3 Top view both flaps closed and secured to right hand side
Picture 4 The bottom flap (and finger) in half its rotation to the left side
Picture 5 Bottom flap now at rest on left side
Picture 6 Both flaps, now at rest on left side
Picture 7 Under side of the item.
I bought a 'black arts' performance table from an auction, when I received it this item was part of the lot, it appears to have no function as part of the table, it appears to be a stand alone piece. As you can see it is covered with black velvet, there is a wooden frame all around the edge with a silver beading to the centre, seems pretty well made, there is a slight give under each flap and the item measure 13 inches across and 1 inch thick. Each of the two flaps are spring loaded and both work well.
I do hope someone in TMN land can make sense of it, I've been racking my brains but fail to see what it could be for. Any suggestions would be gratefully received,