Creativity : Article

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Geraint2k2, Sep 22, 2009.

  1. Creativity. What is it? How do I get some? Do you get student discount?

    All but the latter of the three; are questions I'm asked every day. Facebook, Msn, matter how you communicate it, it seems every aspiring magician would like help with this word.

    The following material will hopefully be able to give you some insight into thinking, whether consciously or otherwise, with a creative outlook on everyday concepts, to create new ideas, and give you a personal, unique, and original approach when making new associations between existing methods, or new hypotheses.

    So lets start with..... Why?

    Why do you want to be creative?
    Is it a need to be famous? To earn money? A necessity for life? Or simply an urge to explore your own potential?

    The main focus on this thesis is creativity within the art of magic.
    Art in its purest definition is the product of human creativity.
    So with that genre of art, which encompasses our love for magic, our very ideal should be to display a creative, unique and entertaining, if not inspiring form of deception.

    I crave creativity to be original. To be the best, and to do nothing more than feed my own ego.
    It is my biggest flaw, and my strongest attribute at all times.

    Once you have worked out why you find the need to create an expression of your own 'ART' you will be understanding yourself, and least importantly, the rest of this document.

    Inspiration can come in many forms, from your perception of a non-magical occurrence in every day life, to a forced flicker of an idea, to what is actually possible.

    Lloyd Barnes and myself started a website called as we felt that we had something to offer the magic community.
    Creative new methods, for new era trickery.
    Magic accessible to everyone who is living it.
    We want to everyone to push the boundaries of what is perceived to be possible in reality.
    Our job is to amaze, and inspiration for material can come from the drink you're quenching your thirst with, to the chair your sitting on, to the pack of cards in your grasp.
    You can continue to read if you humour the idea that inspiration can be derived from EVERYTHING!

    By now you should understand your passion, determination, the way in which you find inspiration and perceive it.
    Each person is different, and thinks differently, so you could argue that "some people have it, and some people don't".
    If that were the case, some people wouldn't be able to learn a new skill, but with enough practice, thought and preparation.... anything is possible.

    Firstly.......Relax, don't force it.
    Ideas don't come because you want them to, they come as you are able to freely think, so my main tip is relax.

    This next part may sound a bit weird, but most of my ideas come to me at night, when I sit in a dimly lit room listening to music, and practicing with a deck of cards, or few coins, or whatever materials used to pull of such miracles.
    That is where I feel most relaxed and can let my mind wander.

    The next tip is to take something you want to achieve, and reverse engineer a method for such a feat.
    I often ask spectators what they would like to see, and trust me you get some good information from them.
    Although most of them just want to see you do David Blaine's rendition of card through window.

    Taking card through window as an example, I often make a list of all the bad points of a trick or sleight, and work out a way to do the same effect, but with less bad points.
    You often come up with a better method, or more solid handling for something.

    If you don't want to use a dupe, or a stooge, or simply can't afford to chuck your deck on the floor, or in my case; are too lazy to demoralize yourself, but pulling off a godly effect, such as throwing a card through a solid pane of glass, only to be clambering all over the floor as your receive your applause, making sure you have the entire deck.

    Slow down I hear you cry, this information is gold, I need to write it down...... have no fear magi.... let's do a re-cap of things to get your creative juices flowing:
    1. Relax and get comfortable
    2. Don't forget that inspiration is all around you.
    3. Try to think of the finished effect, then engineer a method. ( OR ... )
    4. Take current sleights and tricks on the market and make a list of all the things you don't like. Then create a method to remove the bad points, thus creating and entirely new method for an effect you love.

    Games are fun, and competitive. They can come with rules, but no matter what, each individual always has their way of following said rules.
    Individuality and originality exist in everyone who plays a game.
    So here is my idea for you.....

    It has been said that there are 10 theories of magic:
    * Production
    * Vanish
    * Transposition
    * Transformation
    * Multiplication
    * Penetration
    * Restoration
    * Suspension
    * Levitation
    * Mentalism ( thanks to for these ten )

    What you can do with magician friends, friends, colleagues or family members is pick an object at random, something that you could use in a magical performance, then randomly pick a theory of magic.

    You could come up with umm Pen > Transposition for example, then work out how you would want the pen to transpose, and with what.
    It could be the pen and it's cap changing places...... but think of the circumstances, would it be at your fingertips, in someones pockets, under a table, in a bowl. You decide!

    I've played this game, and a chewing gum restoration came of it. It is now my most performed effect of the week so far. I must of done it like 20 times to different spectators over the course of the past 3 days.
    Which proves that the game could spark that primary ignition on your creative flare ( excuse the pun ).

    I'm not saying that I'm an expert, but clearly people are emailing me for a reason.

    As always, try to make everything as natural and motivated as possible, as it will add to your deception.

    I have had hundreds of emails or conversations about the very information above, and I hope that as a set of ideas and methods, this can introduce you to a whole world of possibility, and give you some insight into the question everyone asks, but no-one gets the answer to.


    Geraint Clarke
  2. #2 RDChopper, Sep 23, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 23, 2009
    Im bumping ;)
  3. This is one of those big things that alot people want to do they want creativity right there right then. Usually it doesnt work that way some people can pump out some ideas when they are in "The Frame Of Mind" but it depends everyone has there own little places. I've seen Alot of people get angry sitting there with a deck of cards or coins trying to create. Though generally its for a different cause but they usually give up after a while.

    This is the way to go, now like i said in my little bit above everyone has there own "Space" Geraint's happens to be a dimly lit room listening to music. This is generally my thing but im also reading forums, books, magic books i read words and sometimes its just like someone wacks you in the face with the idea its alot of fun even watching a magic video. It just comes to you some people are always in 'The Frame of Mind" and can come up with tid bits with a flick of a switch some people can't take it slow.

    This is another cool idea i also use. I also use this when looking for gems in books i might be talking to a friend on the phone and just ask them to name a few page numbers and i mark a few books im reading with that number and learn that trick no matter what even if its not your type of magic its a fantastic way to expand and learn also gets your creative juices flowing.
    Trust me i've learned many a gem from this method and i'm sure more will come:D

    As for asking your friends what they would like to see its another fantastic thing. Imagine it you perform for your friends alot they have seen alot of your tricks they want something fresh new your giving them the option to see something they made! Something there mind came up with it also sets you with a challenge and with some cases can make the magic even stronger (Pit Hartling talks about challenges is his book Card Fictions)
    Now see there is an upside to having alot of friends! A few of them are bound to be creative for sure its a fun thing to even work shop, not necisarilly the method, but the effect to how they imagined it making it much more enjoyable on a whole for them to watch and enjoy.

    Maybe one day ill write a essay on creativity its one of my favourite subjects:D

    Sorry for the long reply guys hopefully you got something from it.

  4. Not completely on topic, but, how many of you notice that when people decide to be creative and make a new trick, the first thing that they tend to think of is a card trick or coin trick
  5. Simply because that's what they know, there's nothing wrong with it.

    I've been approached by lots of people who have been in magic a number of months looking to release things - Don't rush - You'll create sub par material that most likely won't be anything new at all...

    Once you've been performing and editing routines for a few years, completely new ideas will come to you forming from bits of stuff here and there... You'll get sparks of creativity here and there, just like any other kind of artist - Don't force it - You'll create sub par material that most likely won't be of any use at all...

    Just learn as much as you can and have fun, ideas will come to you when you're ready - It'll be different for everyone.

  6. I appricate the post it is very well thought out although I have read a similar essay in one of my booklets at home. I have one comment though I don't know how everyone else feels but surely it is far more important to be creative with ones performances. Isn't it best to inspire others with creative performances to hopefully push our art further rather then waiting for the next big trick, I apologise if this comment is off topic.

  7. I think it is important to be creative in performance, for sure, but You can't be a F1 race driver without learning the basics of driving first.

  8. I very much agree i think it was Wayne Houchin a little while back he said Stop. Film yourself when you think your ready to "release" you effect and wait from 1 month to a year or more then film it again. Look how much will have changed from methods to the presentational aspect of the whole effect and you will hopefully like you effect for the better.

    I remember looking back at some youtube videos i posted a while back i deleted them there was no flashes or anything why? It wasn't me anymore thats not how i perform that effect and obviously i have improved greatly over the last year, well i'd like to think so atleast,

    Now this can also circle back to the original post. RELAX

    Take a break look at your actual piece of work your presentation how much of it is you. Creativity comes from somewhere in you. Your method won't be the same as Wayne Houchins to Paul Harris's sure you might utilise their particular views and ideas on the whole idea of creation but overall you are you thats what makes everybody's creating and performances, for the most part on the latter of the 2, unique.

  9. #9 MattSmithies, Sep 23, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 23, 2009
    I understand your analogy but I can't see how it fits in with creating the methodology of a trick. I was trying to look in the context of this essay of working with current older effects rather then starting from scratch.

    This is what I'm trying to say, thank you, you hit the nail on the head.

  10. Ok, Simply put, to create the most effective demonstration, you must have understanding of many aspects - the actual moves you'll do are just one of these, maybe it's just me, but when I was creating tricks 10 years ago, they were pretty bad;

    Effects that were meaningless, see-thru methodology, no suspense or build ups, let down climax points, no thought of psychology, no connection with participants, no REAL originality.

    It was just an idea that I thought was pretty cool at the time, DEFINITELY nothing that could ever have warranted release, which while not the driving force for all creativity wants in young magicians, I know from my experience talking with and helping many people that this is the in vogue thang - everyone wants to release things and rush to do so.

    I can definitely see your point in people being creative in their presentations, but that wasn't what I got from G's original post, he gets emails, just the same as I do from young magicians saying:

    "I really want to release my tricks, but I can't think of any"

    We're trying to discuss two different topics I think! haha!

    Creativity in presentation and Creating new effects. Both are work a look ;)


  11. I Totally agree they are 2 different sides of what we are talking about.

    I think the whole "I really want to release my tricks but i can't think of any." is quite funny they want to release tricks yet they dont have any? Contradiction to themselves much hahah.

    But definitely i remember creating tricks looks back now that were CRAP hahah. Like you said the effects had no meaning it was more a "Do it because i can" sort of thing back in the day.

    Like i said in the previous post and the same with Dee people rush to release things weather it be to be oh so "Famous" within our community or for the money which i don't think you should really be doing it for either reason.

    There are so many proffesionals that create magic not for releasing but for themselves for the actual audience that they get paid to perform for. Joel Givens is a great example that i can think off. Fantastic magician he doesnt usually plan to release anything to the community. Yet ALOT of his material are magician foolers and not because he intends them to be.

    Dee has made some awesome points and G has made some amazing points on creativity aswell. If you are looking for creativity in general it doesnt have to be in just magic this could be for say a drawing or a painting let it flow.

    You will hopefully over time progress how you create your own material and how you approach doing so.

  12. Hey guys,

    Yeah it was mainly methodology in focus when I wrote it last night.

    Exactly like Dee said, I get those emails with people of all ages begging to get their stuff on the market, but they actually have nothing, and are asking how to create, or be more creative.

    Hope the article wasn't a horrendous read :)


  13. What's bumping ?
  14. #14 KeoSilver, Sep 23, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 23, 2009
    I think I am going to figure out an effect involving mm and mms now, see you all later I'll post any results here.

    By the way Wonderful thread.


    I just realized with the use of the internet we can have very small video chat brainstorms to work our creativity to create new effects, just saying and god forbid this actually happens. Sarcasm
  15. Definetly a good read.

  16. Thank you, didn't really think anyone liked it :*(
    .... with the lack of replies etc.

    I really thought this would help everyone.


  17. Hey dude don´t be sad.
    There are a lot of threads here that don´t get as much as attetion as they need.

    And if i may say so, this is a very awesome Article. Although nothing new to me i think it will help out a lot of people.


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