Happy New Year guys.
Here is another retarded movie. Don’t drink too much. I know I will. It’s my muse. Make sure you click link below to watch in HD.
Comments: 5 Comments.
Happy New Year guys.
Here is another retarded movie. Don’t drink too much. I know I will. It’s my muse. Make sure you click link below to watch in HD.
I find that one of the most crucial things that magicians take for granted is the process of losing the card back into the deck. Take the standard selection of the card and putting the card back into the middle and doing a simple pass to control it. Now between the card coming back into the deck and the control is a very short time. Does the audience really believe the card is really back in the middle? Does the fact that the card is in the middle enough to convince them that it is out of the magician’s control?
Maybe the bigger question would be does it increase the impact of the magic? Depends I guess. If we use the context of a simple selection/revelation type of card trick then I would say it certainly does. Examine the way you take the selection back into the deck. How much do you convince them that it is lost? Does a simple double undercut really do the trick?
I would say that handing the deck out for shuffling would be one of the strongest. But maybe your palming isn’t up to par. I find that a simple confirmation of the losing of the card a huge convincer. Let’s say while you are doing the cascade control you say, “Your card is somewhere in the middle that even you nor I would know, yes?”. Now I know many would say that the spectator would always say “yes” in a sense, but the mere fact of him/her saying it themselves is a big thing later on when they reconstruct the effect.
Remember that the magic trick is the “show”, but the most important part is how you color the effect afterwards. Take the David Blaine levatitation for example. He really only floats up 2-3 inches, but when he asks the person how high he went, his hands extended 2-3 feet. The spectator will remember it that way, and tell his friends that down the road.
It’s these little things that make an effect stronger. So next time try to convince the spectator more then you usually would about losing the card and see if the result is better.
Happy Holidays everyone. Hope you guys like the blog. I try my best to speak my mind about things I personally find important to improve the art of magic. But you may wonder, if Tony Chang wasn’t a magician what would he be?
I would deliver pizza.
On the side I would make extremely retarded videos. Check them out and happy holidays. Make sure to click on the links below to view in HD.
Dolphin hands = good color changes. Take that to the bank, senator. The blood bank.
Trust me, when it comes to magic, Mr. Seagal’s opinion is the final answer. So what do I mean by dolphin hands? I think the term (which I made up because i have a fetish for dolphins) describes how to successfully execute a classic color change.
The classic color change. While holding out the card in a classic palm, our hands assume the dolphin hand. It would flash if it wasn’t. That’s the easy part. The hard part is the ditch and what happens after the color change. The reason I feel that the last two parts are the most crucial is because if you do it wrong, the spectator can back track and figured out how you do it. The simple answer is to say that you had a card and added it on right? So how do we make sure they don’t go down that path.
The Ditch. So here is my thoughts on the ditch. The hand must stay in the “dolphin hand” position even after the addition of the card. As magicians, we have a tendacy of over proving the cleaness of our hands after doing something dirty. You know what I’m talking about. When magicians do a color change, all of us open our fingers up like we are doing jazz hands. It’s a very subtle thing but it tips off to the spectator that it was at that point where the card was added. Sure its a subconcious thing, but it is something we can avoid.
This is probably the main point of the post. Get used to having dolphin hands at all times. Why? If the magician’s natural tendency is to have closed fingers, then having a card palmed will not be out of context. Just like having your hands in finger palm gestures all the time while doing coin magic. Instead of having your hands wide open all the time and then close it when you palm something, it keeps your actions natural and doesn’t raise a subconscious flag in their heads.
What Happens After. Similar to the ditch, what do you do afterward? The need to disguize when the card was ditched is very important. Many people doing a color change will stop the waving, magic gesture when the ditch is made. Mission accomplished. The card has been changed. The spectator can feel the ditch because of this simple flaw. Many color changes (in the classic sense) have the magician fly the hand toward the deck to drop the card and then back up to expose the change. The simple change in direction is a major tip off when the color change was made. It doesn’t matter how much waving you do before hand, if the last motion the associated with the color change seems different, then its game over.
The main point is to keep waving even after the change. It’s all by feel of the color change so to speak. If you can’ tell when the ditch happens in the color change in its whole, then you are on the right track.
Ricky Smith has probably one of the sexiest classic color changes I have seen. He has taken all of the above to heart. He didn’t even need my help or know of my existence. check it out here. This is what you should strive for.
Here it is guys, one of the most visual multiple color change out there. Sounds like a lie, but no gimmicks. This will be on the all new 9 DVD set by Paul Harris. We actually shot some of Cheng’s material for the DVD 3 years ago. long time to get something out. click on link below video for HD.
Old video dug up from the grave. He does real magic. period.
Password is the answer to this. “Who’s name was the Olram Subtly named after?”
So I had an great response when I performed this to a laymen friend of mine. From now on I will call the above ACR routine as the “3ACR” and the normal one that I use all the time (basically Ammar’s version with the card going to the mouth on the 4th phase out of 5 phases total) will be called the “5ACR”.
Her reaction to the 3ACR, espically the ending, was literally something I have never seen before in any laymen. It wasn’t the typical “Holy shit! I don’t want to play poker with you because you should goto Vegas! That would be so cool since you know how to use cards really well. Wow! You would be so rich if you dealt cards in Vegas, but I would never play poker with you hahahahaha…”
The reaction was much more “deep”, if that is the correct word to term it. It felt as if to quote Paul Harris, She had the “Moment of Astonishment.” It was basically everything a Derren Brown want-a-be would want in a spectator reaction.
As we kept talking, I asked her what she liked about the routine. She said that this was very personal, there wasn’t a wall between us so to speak. What I found interesting was the fact that she was telling me back what I said during the performance. She would say things like “I put the card back in, and I even turned the card over.” even though it was me doing it the whole time. I wanted this routine to make the spectator feel the way I would if this really happened. I was pretty happy with the reaction.
Now here is the twist. I then showed her the 5ACR. After I was finished I asked her which one did you like better? She said the 5ACR. That hit me pretty hard. I asked to talk more about why. Her main point was the mere fact of me putting the card back in over and over but it got more and more impossible. Like the card jumping up to the mouth and ending with the bent card.
Then she said something that we all should pay attention to. She said, “This was very visual. It hit me visually, but I felt the wall between us. I felt like a spectator just observing what was happening. The (3ACR) was very emotional. I felt it down here (she pointed to her heart).”
She then thought a little bit more and then said “Actually, I really like the (3ACR) much better. The (5ACR) was good, but it was just a trick. The (3ACR) was much better because I connected with you.”
I then told her the saying that comedians have about wanting people not say that you have “good jokes” but that you are a “good comedian”. She admittedly nodded and said, “That is exactly the feeling I was getting.”
Now mind you, this is something I wouldn’t pull out to a complete stranger. The way I perform is very casual. Most patter I have is reactionary to what they say. After I do some of my openers, I usually get the usual questions of “How did you learn to do magic?”, “How long have you been doing it?”, “Whats your favorite trick?”. If those questions pop up, I know they are investing enough to the question for me to pull out these kind of tricks. It’s long, and many magicians would probably hang themselves than sitting through the trick. But I assure you that when the time is right, these kind of presentation and trick would be something special.
Thanks Bijou for letting me pick your brain.
Rarely do I get really impressed with coin magic, but Eric Jones is one of the best I have seen out there. I for one personally think coin magic is the hardest close-up magic discipline to perform well. There has to be a naturalness and smoothness that takes much more time and effort than any card trick. We all should support this guy. Buy his new DVD that just came out.
So I was surfing YouTube last night and decided to look at all the popular known magicians and how they handled the routine. Daryl’s routines were the ones that caught my attention. While he is technically amazing in any aspect, I find something odd with the routine… Roll Film.
Now before I go further, I want to point out that Daryl’s routine was probably influenced by the DVD he was making. I’m sure he wouldn’t of shown that many phases in a real performance setting. It was to show all the sleights he taught on the Ambitious Card DVD. I talk more about the performance in general, It has nothing to do with Daryl personally.
Now, what I noticed right away was how he showed the card has risen to the top. Daryl brushed the first reveal off very quickly. Most of the phases he brushes off. It felt like a throw away. The audience didn’t get to savor the moment. In fact, the audience were catching up the whole time. There is something to be said when you, the magician, isn’t surprised with the your own little miracles. I think attitude is key in making your audience believe the effect.
Daryl’s routine is what I mean by an effect that has gone too long. Does the audience care? What is the point of being fair and more fair through the effect. Why learn all these magical ways to get the card to the top if it wasn’t fair in the first place? When does it stop being magic and becomes a showcase of sleights.
Now people will argue that it doesn’t matter how many phases there are in a ACR as long as you keep them entertained. I agree, but I also think that its your entertainment that keeps the routine moving, not the magic anymore. It takes a back seat.
If you don’t think the number of phases matter in a ACR, then why don’t we do a 50 coins across? Where did J.B. Bobo and David Roth come up with that magical number 4? So is it okay to bring out a bag of half dollars and make them jump across 50 times, just as long as you keep them entertained? Where is the magic in that? Actually, it would be quite amazing if you did a backfire when you had 49 in one hand and 1 left in the other. (I have a method for that) ((This is a running joke… I don’t have a method for that.)) (((But seriously, I do.)))
The frame of these 2 effects are quite simple. A coin jumps to the other hand. A card jumps to the top. I think a major reason that a 50 coins across sounds stupid is because we don’t know 50 different unique ways to bring a coin to the other hand. On the other hand, (It’s a Pun!) we all know many ways to control a card to the top. It is that live long obsession of card magicians to find the next amazing control to the top.
So there lies the problem. How can we make a simple effect like that into something amazing. A coin disappearing from one hand and appearing in your other hand is quite amazing. Why not a card that jumps to the top? Just because we have a dick doesn’t mean we have to go fuck any hole we see. Just becuase we know many card controls doesn’t mean we have to show the audience everyone of them and then label it a trick. That Ho.
I have been getting comments about magic videos on this website and critiquing it harshly.
So here are the reasons to my madness.
1.) Anyone who puts their magic performance videos onto a PUBLIC site, as in it’s not pass worded or private, I feel I have free range on critiquing it. I don’t feel there is any need to contact the person to get permission to put it on the blog as it seems obvious to me that the person wants everyone to see it. If the person did only want a selected few to see it, Youtube or any other public video posting site is a bad idea. May I suggest using VIMEO, they give you the option to password the videos and also gives you the power to not allow others to embed to their websites. If you did not want other people to comment about your performance then WHY put it online? You can easily skype with trusted magicians and workshop any ideas you have. If you put it onto Youtube, I feel you give me or anyone freedom to comment.
2.) No one in magic should get special treatment. We are all here to better the art and if the only reason people feel “bad” of me commenting on people who are known, well is it shame on me or them? If Dai Vernon (in his prime) was doing something bad, I would tell him it’s horrible. Reputation is based on your skills as a magician. You have to keep it up if you want to keep that respect.
3.) I show all my non-magician friends the videos before I put them on. In the end isn’t it the audience that has the final say if the magic was good or not? I show my non-magician friends these videos and get a feel of the are thinking. They always say the same thing. “What the fuck was that.”
4.) Many people think I am somehow immune to all of this. You should critique me the worst. I set a standard on this blog, I should hopefully back up my words. I try to walk the walk. I am not a master magician. Hell, who is. I call it like I see it.
5.) I use the videos to point out what I think are important for close-up magic in general. I am also here to learn too. I am a big believer in that you learn more from mistakes. If you think the only reason I put up these videos is to make fun of them, then read the comments under the posts. I am not alone.
One final thing. READ MY INTERNET LIPS. I do not hate any of these people personally. I am not a big fan of putting half-ass videos onto the Internet. You shot it on a camera, for god sakes make it perfect. There is a rewind button.
When I put ideas or anything half-assed onto this blog, I have the common sense to password it to keep it away from non-magicians. Why don’t you? There should NEVER be a reason to not have a near-perfect performance only on your public video account.
Every magician knows it. Every magician has a version of it. It’s the staple of any card worker. Besides the routine being a playground to practice your amazing controls to the top, the routine has lost its magic. Here are some problems I see with the routine in general.
Too many phases. I have seen magicians do up to 20 phases in a Ambitious Card routine. First of all, It ruins suspense and surprise that we all love about magic. Of course the card will come to the top… it has the last 19 times. A friend of mine, Gary Au once told me in a drunken haze that in order for magic to become a miracle we can’t dilute it. If Jesus H. Christ back in the days cured some person of their blindness (I know a method) it would be a miracle. If he then turned and said “…and for my next act…” and performed the water to wine miracle (I know a method) then he would be lessening the impact of the first act. I see it like this. If the audience can only go from 1 to 10 on the WOW Scale®. The first trick would usually be up to a 9 or 10 if they never seen good magic. If you keep performing, then the audience will only have your other tricks to compare to on the WOW Scale®. This is why I try not to perform to laymen when I have other magician friends around. Instead of the audience saying “Wow that was great!” They say, “Tony Chang was clearly the best out of all you magicians. Stop what you are doing please.”
The raping of the D.L.. Now don’t get me wrong this move is great. It is basically in every crouch magic card trick known to man. But the use of it in almost every phase of Ambitious Card? I personally think using this sleight and showing the card coming back to the top is the BEST method there is. Then why do it 5 times in a row? You dilute the impact it has to give.
So here is my challenge.
Create a Ambitious Card Routine that only has three phases and the last phase is the standard D.L.. This means there is no D.Ls until the last phase. I think it will be a good exercise to strengthening your magic without adding more phases. Make those three moments last. Make them different. Make them connect together as a single piece of magic.
I will be posting my version in a week. I have never given much thought to it, so it will be fun. Also give some good patter with it. If you talk about a puppy that lost his way home and the only way to bring him back to the “top” is to pet the deck like a dog… then I will kill you. Magically of course.
Ever accidentally drop a coin while doing a routine? Make sure you brush it off by saying “don’t worry, that’s the sound of magic.” Its funny. ha ha.
This kid has taken that joke to the next level. Make sure you turn up your speakers. Its hard to hear the sound of magic.