Approach to Practice and Learning

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by angelofioren, Sep 16, 2019.

  1. I'm newly returning to magic at 41 (42 next month) after dabbling in my teens, but choosing to concentrate on music instead of card magic. I've noticed that over the past few months of learning different slights, the fact that I have played piano since I was five and guitar since I was 18 has given me a bit of an edge in learning some sleights. It's been quite encouraging and I've been doing lots of learning and practicing.

    I wonder, how do you all approach learning new things? I have picked up Card College 1-5 and I also picked up Mnemonica, because I'm fascinated by the ideas in that book, and what Juan Tamariz does.

    I have been reading through the books and marking things I enjoy and going back to learn them when I sit down to practice. I have almost finished reading through all of Card College (i'm in the last 4th of Volume 5) and I'm a third of the way through Mnemonica. I've learned a few tricks from the books and I have performed a few, with Mnemonicosis getting the best reactions since it really seems impossible. There's so much to learn, and it feels like I will have years of things to do with just these few books, although I already have more I know I want to read.

    So, any tips for someone who's a little older and is newly entering this world as a fun hobby to perform some fun tricks for his kids and family?

    Gabriel Z. likes this.
  2. I hit people with this when first entering magic(and then I watch it myself again):

    My best piece of advice is to keep practicing you will find things you like other things you might not like... It all really depends on what level you want to get to........ Miracles usually take longer.

    That being said I have been here at for about 6 years and all the while I have been observing and studying other peoples material. Magic is a lot like piano which Shin Lim also studied. You have to learn the chords before you can play the instrument. If you are already up to Card College vol 5 you should be well versed in the art.

    P.S. I am more of a Royal Road guy myself.......Glad to meet your acquaintance.
    Mr_ARPY and angelofioren like this.
  3. Thanks, I appreciate it. I love that Jason England video, and I have watched it several times. Keep in mind I have read the Card College books, but I have not practiced or learned how to do everything in them. I do appreciate knowing what is possible though, and it keeps me motivated. Having played piano and guitar for so long has given me some good insight on how I learn things. I don't really ever remember not being able to play piano, but having learned guitar in my teens, I'm well acquainted with the feeling of helplessness when just learning something that requires skill.

    I have Royal Road as well (you can kind of see it in my avatar image), but I really like how Giobbi explains things.
    Gabriel Z. likes this.
  4. Welcome to the forums and welcome back to magic. Card College is an amazing learning resource and Mnenonica is another great book.

    I started magic around age 39. Being older has its advantages -- you have more disposable income to buy more books (I think I'm over $200) and more experience in learning from books. My complaint is that I have less time to read and to practice with all of life's responsibilities.

    With Card College, spend the time to learn the fundamentals. Having read through the book, you can get a good sense of what is fundamental for your. Then learn the slights and effects you want to perform. Then perform them. If you come across a sleight somewhere else you want to use, go back to Card College to learn it. Learn the classic plots: Triumph, Twisting the Aces, Oil and Water, Ambitious Card, Out of This World, a sandwich routine, different ways to produce aces, etc.

    Find what you like. There are a lot of great books out there. Some of my favorites in card magic are by Paul Harris, Tom Stone, John Bannon and John Gustaferro. My favorites in more general magic include books by Eugene Burger, Jim Steinmeyer, Max Maven, T.A. Waters, John Lovick (Handsome Jack). I love historical books, like those from The Miracle Factory (just got the Annemann book in the mail last week!). We're always here to help with recommendations.

    Last but not least... Perform. Every chance you get. That is the best reward for all of the learning.

    Page 106? ;)
  5. A follow-up question.... how old are your kids? I have a bunch of tried and true effects that work great for various ages.
  6. On page 106 of Royal Road is the Piano Trick, which makes sense fore me!

    Thanks for the amazing advice and you have made me feel like I'm on the right track. You're right about the disposable income, it does come in handy to be able to pick up the books you want.

    My kids are 10 and 6, and I mostly got back into magic because my 10 year old daughter has become really interested in it after watching stuff like Brain Games. The annoying part is that she is great as figuring out the methods I use, but it makes it all the more satisfying when I do fool her. My son loves seeing tricks as well, and he is less concerned with figuring it out and he just enjoys seeing the magic.

    Having a child that understands what I'm doing is great though, because I can work on things with her. She actually complimented me on my Zarrow shuffle and how I did Triumph, which is the version Jason England did on his At the Table lecture. By the way, apart from the books I have bought, those live lectures are a wonderful value and a great resource.
  7. You're on the right track.

    Mnemonica and especially Mnemonicosis is extremely difficult magic, I'm impressed!

    My first piece of advice fo anyone getting into magic is to live with a book. Learn everything in it even if you don't think you will ever use it. It kind of sounds like you are already doing this with all of the volumes of Card College.

    Avoid, excuses as you get into things. Don't shy away from a challenge. I hate it when new magicians say things like, "My hands are too small," more often than not what that really means, is that you haven't practiced enough. I'm sure you run into this with new pianists as well.

    Kids can be awful to perform for! I much prefer adults. My kids are still preschool-aged. So, they still live in a world where they think magic is real. I taught middle school kids for three years and they were a tough crowd. If I ever want to fool older kids I focus on mathematical or self-working effects, David mentioned John Bannon and Jim Steinmeyer these guys are great sources for this kind of magic. You might be tempted to try to fool them with super difficult sleight of hand. With that, it's best to practice and let it marinate for a bit.

    Family and friends can be extremely difficult to perform magic for, so don't be discouraged if they find out a few secrets here and there. Your daughter could be a great magician at some point, and it could be all because of you!

    I performed at a high paying cocktail party yesterday with a magician in his mid-forties. He started magic at the age of 35 and is every bit as good (maybe better) as myself and I started fairly young. So, know that you're definitely not alone!
    JoshL8, RealityOne and angelofioren like this.
  8. Thank you! I love hearing stuff like this. I'm enjoying every minute of both practicing and showing my family the few tricks I know. I do feel lucky in that I'm not having any trouble with hand strength, and it's just a matter of learning the moves and practicing those motions, which is hard in and of itself.
  9. Welcome back! I would give these videos a watch through and see if they help. :) if you have questions please ask and I’ll be happy to clarify or add to them!

    angelofioren likes this.
  10. Funny enough, I randomly came across your classic pass video the other day. It was pretty helpful because I always feel like I'm doing that in the open and everyone will notice.
  11. Glad to hear! Well I hope they are helpful lol. If you ever have questions don’t hesitate to ask! The T11 forums in general have been so wonderful and helpful. Such a great community!
    angelofioren likes this.

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