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Going into a different field.

It seems quite a few people have been going and trying different types of magic, specifically mentalism but I would like to talk about everything as a whole.

Going into a different field can be a rewarding experience or a painful journey that leaves you right where you were before you started. To make sure something like the latter doesn't happen to you there are a few questions to really check first.

First question, is this within my technical skill level?

Cards are very simple to get into for the variety of effects that are sold now. Some effects are self working, and others from the ecentric artists are quite difficult and require sleigths you haven't really seen before. If you aren't very good with practicing or getting stuff down with your clumsy hands then you are still in luck but you will have to limit yourself, if only for a bit, to the easier effects. Of course the best effects are simple, direct, and magical looking.

Going into something new like coins from cards is fairly simple if you can figure the skill level that you are able to perform some effects. If you can do some DnD effects fairly well and know the little subtleties to make them work then you probably have a good chance to make it happen.

If you are like me and do mainly the most direct and simplest of effects like a two card transpo with a dupe then coins may not be the best step. Coins are difficult to really train with and make work if you just do almost self working effects.

Going into mentalism isn't very difficult and most mentalism effects require no sleights and if they do then be prepared for how silly and easy they are. Don't assume you can do it though as I will explain in a bit. However, if you are able to do the simplest of sleights extremely well, like a very clean and simple looking DL or second deal even, (Don't know what uses a second deal) then you're in good shape.

It's really good to check on your skill level you can do with something like cards or some other sort of manipulation to know if it's going to be a rough or smooth journey.

Second question, Am I going into this for the whole nine yards?

So you allowed yourself to think that you can perform the technical level of w/e you are trying to perform. Now you need to understand going into this fully will make it easier for the full journey.

With cards it's a difficult subject for any question because of how much stuff is in cards. If you are going into cards with just the basic sleights then you need to work your way up to more difficult sleights that will produce more effects. I'm not saying learn all of DnD type of sleights. If you are going into this then you need to excel on trying to learn w/e you can about the types of sleights and perhaps different methods to card magic.

Coins, many people get into this only looking for a few sleights they saw and thought were the "super diggity awesome cool chicken wings." Well with coins you need to go far, because they are numerous sleights to learn to make everything magical. Only learning a few will reduce not only what you can do obviously, but in a bad situation you are stuck with something the audience already knows or suspects.

Learning what you can about producing coins from your hands can assure no solution to your audience. Produce one coin in your left hand one way, and your right hand a different way. This needs you to go beyond what your initial plans were and try to strive for something much more.

Mentalism is something that is not looked at properly by many people. This is not another magic trick that is supposed to be real. You are going in or out on this one, chances are, you'll be looking at the same methods again and again for many different effects. Understanding that mentalism is all about HAVING to establish a connection with the audience, and going all out to make it a true experience of something out of the Twilight Zone.

Half a$%ing something like this will just make you regret going in and wonder why you can't make it real like Maven or Derren. Chances are you just learned the effect and not understanding everything as a whole that makes mentalism real.

Third and last question, Can I perform this, really make it magic?

Cards are not going to be easy, for it has a medium you must reach for spectators and establishing where it is for each spectator. Doing a whole bunch of fancy sleights for one person will turn them off and make it look like a babbling of incredible card skill and not magic. While others will be intrigued for your control of skill but still look upon it as being real magic.

This is why learning all sorts of sleights and different effects will help your performances tremendously. Doing the transpo I talked of earlier against Tivo 2.0, which one is more visual and looks like crazy magic, which one looks clean and like direct magic? This is a question you need to ask yourself depending on spectator reactions.

Coins are in my true opinion pointless but since nobody seems to fully agree I will try to convey on how you can perform this, because it's very simple. Make every single action, every single little thing you do be as unnoticeable and real as possible.

You have to make every little thing be as real as possible, for even though they may initially think "it's in the other hand" you have to take that thought and shove it so up in a place so far that only the crazies would find it. The retention vanish needs to be silky smooth, but not only be seen as to be putting it in that hand but have that feeling also. Spectators are human and will sometimes have that thought or feeling that it's going into the other hand, make it impossible for that thought to even reach them.

What I am about to write is what I was really making this thread for and of course I'll explain.

SO many people trying to go into mentalism are going to fail and wonder why. Spending money on a whole bunch of stuff that they will later on never use in life. Well it's because you can't perform it and don't understand it. Now obviously mentalism isn't necessarily to look like magic but to be as real and impossible but possible in your audiences head.

You need to understand that magic and mentalism are on two different levels. Not saying one is above the other but it's like playing a different game, where the actions you do and how you go about them result in much different experience for everybody. Going into this thinking that your idle patter will pass is not going to work, neither is fancy work with your hands. This is as direct as it can get, understanding that you are the reason behind it working is the first step.

Work on everything else first, your coins and cards, everyday objects, all that is just a preview, a warmup before you get to mentalism. Understanding the performance and presentation behind it and everything you need to do to make it look real is just overlooked by so many. Mentalism is a different step and will require more than just answering the question I wrote before, it will require time, effort, and maturing of age to be looked at and judged by others as "the real deal."

Anything else to add?
 
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Nov 20, 2007
4,410
6
Sydney, Australia
Great thread. Expresses a lot that I wish I could express to every person starting a "Getting into mentalism" thread. This should be referred to everyone who posts such a thread, though I'm not surprised it's been shifted down the thread list. Perhaps this proves a point, or at least supports it, that not enough people actually know about mentalism.

The only thing I'd add to that is that for the exact reasons stated above, mentalism is usually less technically challenging than magic. However, in my opinion, mentalism is far harder to perform, because it is about people.

Card magicians can get away with a half-decent routine only staring at their cards and saying "And now I'm going to put the card in the middle. And if I click, the card... magically... [As though the dramatic pause was any substitute for presentation] rises to the top". Any mentalist who tries that will just bore the audience.
 
Mar 6, 2008
1,483
3
A Land Down Under
As a pure mentalist I know exactly what you are trying to achieve with this post. Thank you for posting this, however there are a few things that mentalists do that most other magician's seem to neglect. Most mentalists have a (plausible) back story as to how they developed their 'power' and how that they are using it.

Character development is one of the most important factors in developing a believable character. As most people on here are primarily card guys we will use them as the theme of the point that I am trying to get to. If we where to look at people like Jason England and Steve Forte, they character is 100% believable. This is because they are actually doing what they say they are. These two have devoted most of their life to achieve this. Whilst this is one end of the spectrum it is what a lot of mentalist want to achieve, 100% real in method and presentation.

Most mentalist however would be more comparable to someone like Darwin Ortiz. He has the character similar to the two previously mentioned people however his work also has a certain air of 'magic' to it. You can explain most of what he does as an extreme amount of skill but that last 15%, is unexplainable it feels real. If we were to uses the psychology back story that is so popular now days because of Derren, how can we really get the name of where someone just from little body gestures. If we get a few letters from the name Steven using Banachek's Letters in a Word ploy by revealing the letter they are thinking of would be V. There are still many names that have a letter V in it. How did we know it was Steven and not David, they don't sound the same or have any other common letters. I suppose they are the both male names but that is about it.

I know how I am 'reading minds' but the real question is how are you getting the card to rise to the top in an ACR. If you cannot rationalise that how can you possibly rationalise something as delicate as psychic phenomena. You can give it a NLP method or something like seeing through someone's eyes both very different however they seem to achieve the same result.

That above point was in no way a stab at any magicians. A lot of the time I feel the audience is experiencing a show of look what I can do, for no reason other than I can.

So if you want to take up anything new, more power to you for that. However, you really need to make sure it is you and that you can make it work. Or at least put in the work that it deserves.
 
Oct 29, 2009
971
0
Just around
Nice post Sherlock, and very true. Mentalism is something that can't be a casual thing. It can't be the usual half-baked patter. It's something that if not done well, is completely pointless, and has no effect on the spec. It has to be real to them.
 
Sep 24, 2007
417
1
To do mentalism, you need to believe it's real. The code of honor is levels apart from the magicians code, because it's NOT just a trick. What you're doing is real. If people ask you how you did that, you can't reply with "it's just a trick." It's REAL.
 

Orb

Jul 19, 2009
84
0
Sweden
There are some things in here that's really bugging me.

"If you aren't very good with practicing or getting stuff down with your clumsy hands then you are still in luck but you will have to limit yourself, if only for a bit, to the easier effects"
This is ridiculous, you should never limit yourself and give up on things because they are more difficult. If something is worth attaining, then you practice until you get that down. And if it's due to lack of will to practice, then you shouldn't be into magic in my humble opinion.

"If you are like me and do mainly the most direct and simplest of effects..."
Sorry, this kind of made me speechless. This goes against every artistic rule, to precisely aim for an effect that is simple. One should always aim for the most magical effect, no matter how hard that might be to reach, limiting yourself to simple effects is stupid and beyond.

"Coins are in my true opinion pointless..."
I read another ranting topic from you awhile ago, which had a link to someone else explaining why coin magic doesn't work. Since you stated that you agree with the thread I'll make some quotes.


"REASON 1 – COIN MAGIC OFTEN LACKS LOGICAL REASON IN ITS EFFECTS"
"Often, a magician makes a coin vanish and reappear for no reason, then uses another method to do the same thing, or he makes the coin appear somewhere illogical. “Look the coin is gone – now it’s in my sock” WTF? Why in the world did it end up there?"

First off I would like to compare this to one of the most famous card effects (and in my opinion most beautiful and magical). The Ambitious Card Routine. You ask the spectator to select a card, you then place it in the deck and it rises to the top. Lets break that down.

1. Despite the fact that you and the spectator know which card it is, you STILL put it face down, and into the deck. There is no reason whatsoever for you to have your deck of cards face down, and his selected card face down while inserted.
In a lot of ACRs, at the third or fourth try, they often add a convincer to show that it really IS their card they're putting in. Despite being aware of suspicion sometimes arising, you still have the cards faced down, how is that logical?

2. You claim to be a magician, and what you do is bring out a deck of cards, make the spectator select a card and it then rises to the top. This is repeated... Please do tell me, where is the logics in that? Is that what you would be doing if you really could do magic? "look, now your card is in my mouth!"


"REASON 2 – COIN MAGIC PRESENTAIONS ARE LIMITED AND DIFFICULT:"
"I can hear you guys saying, “Well, I say it happens for this reason”, but I also ask that you check that your reason isn’t verbal diarrhea that isn’t illogical rationale for illogical magic."

This is PURELY based on his/your own experiences of coin magic presentations. They are not any more limited than anything else, card magic or other forms of magic. Reading this was just embarrassing.


"REASON 3 – COIN MAGIC IS LIMITED IN INTERACTION"
"In coin magic, you are often just using your audience’s eyes, but are not their brains, their emotions, often not even their ears? Coins don’t engage as many senses as other mediums, like cards, do."

Why would they be any less emotionally involved with coins than cards? Why wouldn't coins be using senses like cards would? "often not even their ears?", often? Did you watch Cultural Exchange and base your whole coin magic experience on that?
There are loads of effects where coins are signed, just like in card magic, to add convincingness and involvement. There are plenty of coins acrosses that happen in the spectators hands, there are so many effects to choose from where a spectator is involved (Did you ever see David Roths Blank Coin routine?). Let me quote something else:
"I believe that doing “look at me magic” can sometimes appear, wrongly, as a challenge effect, because you are fooling people (and they can feel stupid) and it appears as if you are showing off"
Please remember, that you're now speaking of all forms of parlor (even stage?) magic. Why are coins anymore victimized? This can and should be prevented by a proper presentation.


"REASON 4: COIN MAGIC LOOKS LIKE IT TAKES SKILL"
"…because people realize it’s a game of hide and seek. Where is the coin? Hmm, perhaps behind your big meaty hook of a hand!"

There are convincers for this, such as stack steals, subtleties, grips (J.W, Edge grip) etc. Take a look at Kainoa Harbottles The Pendulum Hanging Coins, when people see him vanishing coins in both hands, yet displaying them empty, do you still think they remain in their "hide and seek"? Or when Justin Miller vanishes his 3 coins in his Silver Dream?
Wondering if the object is in the other hand goes for vanishing anything, not just coins, and there are convincers to prevent that. There are no "hide and seek" games occurring constantly. It happens but it is your duty as a magician to leave your spectator with no explanation, otherwise your routine needs to be looked over again.

As for coin magic looking like it takes skill... I couldn't disagree more. A lot of card magicians I see uses flourishes, which is an direct turnoff for any type of card magic. But also by the way a lot of people decide to shuffle. As soon as I see anything remotely to an weird or different shuffle, all forms of trust is gone. Other than stating that coin magic look like it takes skill, I don't really see any arguments for it at all.


The reason I keep comparing with card magic is because you keep calling coin magic useless, but card magic seem to be fine. I'm simply showing you how many illogical things there are within card magic. Now I'm not in any way putting it down, I'm simply trying to say that despite it being illogical to vanish a coin and reproduce it elsewhere, it is a miracle. No matter how illogical or unnecessary it is to put a card in the middle just to make it jump back to the top, it's an impossibility, it's magic. And what people want to see, is magic.

If you see someone pull a huge goddamn boat from thin air, wouldn't that be the weirdest of things? I mean, what the hell, but would that really be what you would be thinking about? Why he pulled that huge boat out of the air? Or how amazing, magical and impossible it is that he did it?
 
There are some things in here that's really bugging me.

"If you aren't very good with practicing or getting stuff down with your clumsy hands then you are still in luck but you will have to limit yourself, if only for a bit, to the easier effects"
This is ridiculous, you should never limit yourself and give up on things because they are more difficult. If something is worth attaining, then you practice until you get that down. And if it's due to lack of will to practice, then you shouldn't be into magic in my humble opinion.

"If you are like me and do mainly the most direct and simplest of effects..."
Sorry, this kind of made me speechless. This goes against every artistic rule, to precisely aim for an effect that is simple. One should always aim for the most magical effect, no matter how hard that might be to reach, limiting yourself to simple effects is stupid and beyond.

"Coins are in my true opinion pointless..."
I read another ranting topic from you awhile ago, which had a link to someone else explaining why coin magic doesn't work. Since you stated that you agree with the thread I'll make some quotes.


"REASON 1 – COIN MAGIC OFTEN LACKS LOGICAL REASON IN ITS EFFECTS"
"Often, a magician makes a coin vanish and reappear for no reason, then uses another method to do the same thing, or he makes the coin appear somewhere illogical. “Look the coin is gone – now it’s in my sock” WTF? Why in the world did it end up there?"

First off I would like to compare this to one of the most famous card effects (and in my opinion most beautiful and magical). The Ambitious Card Routine. You ask the spectator to select a card, you then place it in the deck and it rises to the top. Lets break that down.

1. Despite the fact that you and the spectator know which card it is, you STILL put it face down, and into the deck. There is no reason whatsoever for you to have your deck of cards face down, and his selected card face down while inserted.
In a lot of ACRs, at the third or fourth try, they often add a convincer to show that it really IS their card they're putting in. Despite being aware of suspicion sometimes arising, you still have the cards faced down, how is that logical?

2. You claim to be a magician, and what you do is bring out a deck of cards, make the spectator select a card and it then rises to the top. This is repeated... Please do tell me, where is the logics in that? Is that what you would be doing if you really could do magic? "look, now your card is in my mouth!"


"REASON 2 – COIN MAGIC PRESENTAIONS ARE LIMITED AND DIFFICULT:"
"I can hear you guys saying, “Well, I say it happens for this reason”, but I also ask that you check that your reason isn’t verbal diarrhea that isn’t illogical rationale for illogical magic."

This is PURELY based on his/your own experiences of coin magic presentations. They are not any more limited than anything else, card magic or other forms of magic. Reading this was just embarrassing.


"REASON 3 – COIN MAGIC IS LIMITED IN INTERACTION"
"In coin magic, you are often just using your audience’s eyes, but are not their brains, their emotions, often not even their ears? Coins don’t engage as many senses as other mediums, like cards, do."

Why would they be any less emotionally involved with coins than cards? Why wouldn't coins be using senses like cards would? "often not even their ears?", often? Did you watch Cultural Exchange and base your whole coin magic experience on that?
There are loads of effects where coins are signed, just like in card magic, to add convincingness and involvement. There are plenty of coins acrosses that happen in the spectators hands, there are so many effects to choose from where a spectator is involved (Did you ever see David Roths Blank Coin routine?). Let me quote something else:
"I believe that doing “look at me magic” can sometimes appear, wrongly, as a challenge effect, because you are fooling people (and they can feel stupid) and it appears as if you are showing off"
Please remember, that you're now speaking of all forms of parlor (even stage?) magic. Why are coins anymore victimized? This can and should be prevented by a proper presentation.


"REASON 4: COIN MAGIC LOOKS LIKE IT TAKES SKILL"
"…because people realize it’s a game of hide and seek. Where is the coin? Hmm, perhaps behind your big meaty hook of a hand!"

There are convincers for this, such as stack steals, subtleties, grips (J.W, Edge grip) etc. Take a look at Kainoa Harbottles The Pendulum Hanging Coins, when people see him vanishing coins in both hands, yet displaying them empty, do you still think they remain in their "hide and seek"? Or when Justin Miller vanishes his 3 coins in his Silver Dream?
Wondering if the object is in the other hand goes for vanishing anything, not just coins, and there are convincers to prevent that. There are no "hide and seek" games occurring constantly. It happens but it is your duty as a magician to leave your spectator with no explanation, otherwise your routine needs to be looked over again.

As for coin magic looking like it takes skill... I couldn't disagree more. A lot of card magicians I see uses flourishes, which is an direct turnoff for any type of card magic. But also by the way a lot of people decide to shuffle. As soon as I see anything remotely to an weird or different shuffle, all forms of trust is gone. Other than stating that coin magic look like it takes skill, I don't really see any arguments for it at all.


The reason I keep comparing with card magic is because you keep calling coin magic useless, but card magic seem to be fine. I'm simply showing you how many illogical things there are within card magic. Now I'm not in any way putting it down, I'm simply trying to say that despite it being illogical to vanish a coin and reproduce it elsewhere, it is a miracle. No matter how illogical or unnecessary it is to put a card in the middle just to make it jump back to the top, it's an impossibility, it's magic. And what people want to see, is magic.

If you see someone pull a huge goddamn boat from thin air, wouldn't that be the weirdest of things? I mean, what the hell, but would that really be what you would be thinking about? Why he pulled that huge boat out of the air? Or how amazing, magical and impossible it is that he did it?

Well thank you for not completely reading parts of my post, as it would have drastically reduced what you wrote.

I said limit yourself, if only for a bit. This isn't saying give up, it's saying limit yourself to easier sleights until you can build up yourself to the more difficult sleights. You can't just jump from a double lift to a super difficult sleight, takes time and that's my point. Not reading every part of what I write will mislead you into wrongful thinking.

Well thank you for calling it stupid, while you have no idea about me and what I perform. I do mostly mentalism with a touch of magic on the side, obviously not mixing the two together. I do very simple effects for the reason being I'm not very good with cards, not even that reason alone actually. I don't see reasons doing a transpo like Tivo 2.0 when I can easily prepare myself and just use a dupe. Also, just to actually point out something, I never said go for simple magic I just stated that I personally use simple magic never recommending it in any way, shape, or form.

Direct and simple magic, not necessarily simple as in sleights but simple to follow and watch for the audience. Lastly, you have no right to criticize or judge what I perform and why, when you have no idea how I perform or even any idea of why I do it.

While I agree with most of Morgician I do not agree with everything. You take everything out of context it's incredibly annoying, you make way to many assumptions which in turn causes you to fail in a way.

The reason I believe coin magic to be pointless is for one reason, it doesn't make any sense, at least to me. When I watch it, whether it be coins across or manipulations and productions I never get the sense of magic. This is before I became a magician, before I lost that little bit inside me after knowing the secrets to magic.

You take one coin and place it in the other, no reason could substantially provide a good excuse for it. I'm not saying people shouldn't do it, I just personally find it pointless. I actually do one effect from In The Beginning there were Coins, a transpo called You and Me I believe with a little variation. This again has no real point behind it other than to entertain, but with my presentation it does have a point.

My presentation for ACR makes perfect sense for turning the card down, not directly saying it but it makes perfect sense as to why something like this would happen. This is something I am glad you mentioned, actually the only thing to be honest. Everybody who has these scripts of a disruption in reality and all this nonsense, I understand the reasoning behind it but nobody really believes something so out there.

So again, read exactly what I write and if it does need clarification I don't mind but everything you mentioned was based on misreading and assumptions.
 
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Orb

Jul 19, 2009
84
0
Sweden
"I do very simple effects for the reason being I'm not very good with cards, not even that reason alone actually. I don't see reasons doing a transpo like Tivo 2.0 when I can easily prepare myself and just use a dupe. Direct and simple magic, not necessarily simple as in sleights but simple to follow and watch for the audience."

I do not see what I said wrong here. You do simple effects for the reason being that you're not good with cards, I wouldn't mind calling you stupid again.

When you say that you do simple effects because you're not great with cards (even if that isn't the full reason), that implies that there are much greater effects to be obtained, just that you can't be bothered to get the practice down to do it? Or some kind of reason. That is fully what your sentence implies, and if that's so, that is indeed stupid. If I am misunderstanding this please correct me.

"While I agree with most of Morgician I do not agree with everything. You take everything out of context it's incredibly annoying, you make way to many assumptions which in turn causes you to fail in a way."

Do elaborate on those assumptions. Other than seeing you flying over the forum pretending to being some dominant vulture, I've seen you complain on coin magic enough times for me to react. Since that was my only source of your complaints at the time, I'll use them.

"You take one coin and place it in the other, no reason could substantially provide a good excuse for it."

In your vision of magic, how should it work? It's like saying that you see no reason for why magicians would have to use a wand to make things disappear. Or why card magicians (I have to use this example again) should have their cards face down, despite knowing that you have a lot of prove as a magician, and should try to be as open as possible. When you go this far down and analyze things, suddenly everything becomes pointless and unnatural. Why would you use solid cups in cups and balls, knowing you're mistrusted? Why not use transparent ones, since you're really doing magic?

The only answer I have for you, for these things, is that: It's how it works.
A magician with a wand makes a rule that, in order to vanish things, he has to tap the wand on the hand, and it will vanish. That rule becomes accepted. Is it weird? In a way, yes, but it is accepted and it works.
A coin magician already has the rule that in order to make something vanish (not always, remember that) he has to put the coin in the other hand.
I don't know how many that would suspect the wand, but in a one coin routine, people will suspect the other hand, and you need to make sure that that hand is empty. Make sure that putting the coin in that hand, is just to make it vanish, because it's how it works, not because you're hiding it in the hand.

In a way I see your point, however I do not see why you especially victimize coin magic, and are bold enough to call it pointless. We do a lot of weird things, the only explanation is that it's accepted, and we live by that. It's the rules we have made.

"My presentation for ACR makes perfect sense for turning the card down, not directly saying it but it makes perfect sense as to why something like this would happen."

It would be greatly appreciated if you shared the reason to how you make it logical, as I think it would contribute to the debate.

"So again, read exactly what I write and if it does need clarification I don't mind but everything you mentioned was based on misreading and assumptions."

Yet few of my questions were answered. Do elaborate.
 
After this post I may leave this subject alone, unless you can keep it a bit more civil. I don't mind debating and actually love it, however name calling and stupid remarks aren't really tolerated by me when it's simple to keep it to other words that can share a similar feeling.

I do simple effects because I have no reason to push further into cards when my main focus is on mentalism. I believe card magicians should push to the fullest, however I am not a true card magician and have no plans on becoming one. My sleights in my effects are smooth and have been practiced, however they aren't very difficult but w/e I do I try to perfect.

It came off to me that you believed I was trying to convey to everybody (that sounds complicated) that they should stick to simple magic. In no way did I write that, I actually promote learning more sleights and becoming a better card magician this way. I again do not do to much card magic currently but mainly just for friends and every once a while some random performances.

If you believe that I am coming off as a dominant vulture then I apologize, I do hold some respect for myself and for others. However, quite often I see to many people making the same mistakes that could easily be avoided by reading posts here, books sold by several respected magicians.

The assumption you made was believing that I agreed with every part of Morgicians thread, which I did not. I simply stated it because it got the overall feeling I had towards coin magic. It seemed you made it a point to write that it was almost my thread that was being written.

I have my opinions and you have yours, which is fine. Some of them can be kept to ourselves like calling people stupid, I like to think I'm above name calling and I would think someone who is intelligent as yourself would be also. My opinion of coin magic will most likely stay the same unless there is some breakthrough with it ,which I don't see coming.

As I wrote before in this posts and others before in different threads, I was a spectator before I was a magician and a spectator for awhile. I always looked at coin magic as fool me once. I knew it was in the other hand, I never saw it go into it, but always placing it in a different hand and producing it from the previous one always just seemed pointless to me. I love watching it as a magician, it looks amazing at the skill but as a magic standpoint I'm not very fond of it.

If people are entertained by your coin magic then more power to you. Me personally I still believe it to be pointless before and after my time as a magician as I stated before. I like to perform in a fun and uplifting manner but making an intelligent performance also that answers some of those things that some may or may not think about.

I agree with you about cups and balls routines, but I believe I could make a believable presentation. Perhaps talking about how when you lose focus for just a second, poof this one disappears or reappears or w/e the case is. I would never perform cups and balls personally but I believe it is a very clever routine and love watching it.

My presentation has stayed particularly to the same plot of an ex that is a crazy stalker. Force a queen or jack, "This card will represent your girlfriend/boyfriend, and you take them out to eat at a fancy restaurant and you hit it off very nicely. You take her home and head off to your place to get a good night's rest." Place the card into the middle face down. "When you wake up you smell sausage and fresh waffles, it tickles your taste buds but it's a bit frightening knowing someone has apparently broken in. You come inside and the girl you took out before has apparently broken into your house."

This is of course a storytelling type of effect but actually involves the spectator.

Basically the plot thickens from here as it goes deeper of them following you to the ends of the earth until I end with a climax of card to mouth or pocket or w/e fits the current situation. With my mentioning of dropping her off at her place, and later on "You see her arrested and dragged off" or "..you run away from the stalker not even noticing that they have completely vanished."

This actually gives a reason for what you are doing, for turning over the card and leaving it face down. I actually even do a face up version part in some variations of the routine and just do a pass or a color change after doing a Marlo's tilt move.

You misread a few things in my original post and I believe you know this now. I clarified as best as I could, and I will be the first to admit to leaving out some details unfortunately as I get caught up in writing. I actually wrote my thoughts in the original post and meant everything I wrote and how I wrote it.
 
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Orb

Jul 19, 2009
84
0
Sweden
Interesting pattern, still, how do you justify taking the card and putting it in faced down? Didn't really get that.

The main problem I see here is that by your bad experience of coin magic as a spectator (which I still don't see where it fully came from, watched some bad performances perhaps?) has affected the way you see all coin magic now.

It appears that you do not believe that coin magic works on spectators (misinterpret?), yet I think there's plenty of proofs of that. You state that as a magician you can appreciate the skill but not the magic, does that mean that because you can't appreciate the magic, you do not wish to perform it for others, or simply because you do not believe that spectators will buy it as magical?

I would like to ask another question, how much do you know of coin magic? I'm sure you've heard of David Roth, but have you seen any of his performances? He has the ability to entertain people for hours using just coins (and various props).

The main problem I have with you, is that you completely trash someone else's art, stating multiple times that it's "pointless".
It's not pointless, you convey it as illogical, I'll accept that. But when you trash a whole group of people like that, you will inevitably make enemies.
 
The justification is inside the script, as you "drop her off.." suggesting you don't see her again, meaning there is no reason for her to be seen. I haven't ever had the problem really of people trying to look at the card, I always do that second (showing the actual card) since it justifies what they just saw and what they will see.

It's not bad experience but rather it's the environment that people just kind of knew what was happening. People where I live and other places, people always knew it was in the other hand. I saw decent performances, nothing flashed or looked fishy but I always figured it was in the other hand.

I don't necessarily believe it won't work on spectators but in my experiences people seem to know more about whats going on in the coin magic genre than the card scene. Maybe someone lives in the exact opposite type of place, where coin magic is absolutely wonderful but people dislike coin magic.

For coin magic it's a little bit of half and half of what you stated. I can enjoy it for the skill it requires but not really the magical aspect, and yes the place I currently live at does not fall for coin magic whatsoever. I have performed a few sleights and I was a bit more than capable, nothing compared to some of the guys I have seen on here though.

Everyone was seem to be getting astonished, however they would always glance at my other hand. I'm talking about a clean french drop, and a few other sleights but it never worked. I am of course not even mediocre in coin magic now, but perhaps it was my performance or my actions. However nobody I am friends with has ever been fooled by a coin magic video or been very impressed with it.

I've seen a few videos of Roth, Eric Jones stuff, a few other guys and it's all very nice. I still stand by my thoughts, however I will have to change my wording and I apologize for it. Coin magic is illogical even more so than the generic arguement of any other type of magic and why we do things.

I retract anything I said about coin magic being pointless and will simply replace the word with illogical.
 
Nov 20, 2007
4,410
6
Sydney, Australia
It's true though that basically all magic is illogical. This is basically because we can't actually do magic, we need to make compromises.

On one hand, I agree with Orb in that sense.

On the other, I also agree with Sherlock, in that I believe coin magic is more difficult than most other branches to avoid this fact, and has more challenges about it.

However, at the end of the day, this is a great thread about people moving into mentalism. Let's not lose sight of that.
 
Sep 24, 2007
417
1
If we're concerned about illogicality, mentalism is pretty ilogical too. Why would you tell somebody you're going to read his/her mind? Just get their credit card number and leave, no need for any interaction.

I try to ignore that.
 
Mar 6, 2008
1,483
3
A Land Down Under
If you look at all the great mentalists they need to interact with someone. The source of their 'power' may change but they all have some form interaction and process to determine the that the spectator has in their mind.

So in example of the credit card numbers, how many people know all 16 numbers on their credit card, not to mention the expiry date and the security numbers on the back. So if they don't know it how can I? Also with all this credit card fraud how would you go about purchasing anything with this credit card. You could not go into any store and just type in the numbers into a key pad as most stores will ask for some form of id if you do that. You cannot get anything shipped to your house as there is some record of where you live.

Kind of an illogical example of how illogical something is don't you think.
 
Mar 29, 2008
882
2
"REASON 1 – COIN MAGIC OFTEN LACKS LOGICAL REASON IN ITS EFFECTS"

First off I would like to compare this to one of the most famous card effects (and in my opinion most beautiful and magical). The Ambitious Card Routine. You ask the spectator to select a card, you then place it in the deck and it rises to the top. Lets break that down.


"REASON 2 – COIN MAGIC PRESENTAIONS ARE LIMITED AND DIFFICULT:"

This is PURELY based on his/your own experiences of coin magic presentations. They are not any more limited than anything else, card magic or other forms of magic. Reading this was just embarrassing.


"REASON 3 – COIN MAGIC IS LIMITED IN INTERACTION"

Why would they be any less emotionally involved with coins than cards? Why wouldn't coins be using senses like cards would? "often not even their ears?", often? Did you watch Cultural Exchange and base your whole coin magic experience on that?
There are loads of effects where coins are signed, just like in card magic, to add convincingness and involvement. There are plenty of coins acrosses that happen in the spectators hands, there are so many effects to choose from where a spectator is involved (Did you ever see David Roths Blank Coin routine?). Let me quote something else:


"REASON 4: COIN MAGIC LOOKS LIKE IT TAKES SKILL"

There are convincers for this, such as stack steals, subtleties, grips (J.W, Edge grip) etc. Take a look at Kainoa Harbottles The Pendulum Hanging Coins, when people see him vanishing coins in both hands, yet displaying them empty, do you still think they remain in their "hide and seek"? Or when Justin Miller vanishes his 3 coins in his Silver Dream?
Wondering if the object is in the other hand goes for vanishing anything, not just coins, and there are convincers to prevent that. There are no "hide and seek" games occurring constantly. It happens but it is your duty as a magician to leave your spectator with no explanation, otherwise your routine needs to be looked over again.

As for coin magic looking like it takes skill... I couldn't disagree more. A lot of card magicians I see uses flourishes, which is an direct turnoff for any type of card magic. But also by the way a lot of people decide to shuffle. As soon as I see anything remotely to an weird or different shuffle, all forms of trust is gone. Other than stating that coin magic look like it takes skill, I don't really see any arguments for it at all.


If you see someone pull a huge goddamn boat from thin air, wouldn't that be the weirdest of things? I mean, what the hell, but would that really be what you would be thinking about? Why he pulled that huge boat out of the air? Or how amazing, magical and impossible it is that he did it?


Alright - when you deal with my points, I feel I have a right to discuss.

1) So - you bring up "the card vesus coin argument" - which is WAY off base - I think ACR's are illogical as well. This argument is about motivated movments and plot. You just compare one illogical thing against another - ILLOGICAL is illogical in any branch of the art. So really, you illustrated it IS a weakness in all magic...but it exists in FAR larger number of effects percentage wise, than cards. BUT - it isn't about cards versus coins - it is about illogical effects - period.

2) Reading these words were embarassing...hmm, I bet not as embarassing as the empty words that accompany many people's coin magic. What "related" and intelligent presentations are you using with your coin work. Share a couple, please, I would love to be inspired. For the most part, the coins having "wings" or having the coins represent anything arbitrary is as childish as calling a playing card a "dectective". I have spent time with many named and talented coin magicians, they will all talk to you about these limitations, due to the social concept and perception of money. Perhaps you don't understand this point...so it was over your head...which would be the only legit and kind way to explain your embarassment reading it. Ask if you need more clarification

3) Sounds like you know little of card magic...auditory is used often with cards, for example Paul Harris has the 2 for 3 count he follows up with a auditory click of all three cards. Moreover, the reason they are less connected Orb, is that they don't have an emotional attachment to the coin - when they pick a card, it is THEIR card. Cards stir many emotional hooks - but again...this isn't a card versus coin debate. The question is - what "emotional hooks' are you using that you feel makes the audience connect? Signing a coin does not "involve you" only passively....if you think this is involvement, asking someone to mark a coin, then your show must be void of a real connection in performance.

4) It is funny you would state, "Wondering if the object is in the other hand goes for vanishing anything" actually, no it doesn't...because when you put a card in the middle, they don't wonder if it is really on top...they wonder how it got back on top. Moreover, many people if you ask them where the coin is when it is gone, will point to your other hand - it is only the string of movements that confuse them and loses them that makes you think you are fooling them.

You state, "there are convincers to prevent that", yeah, these convincers look like juggling...consfuse and look like are conceiling the coin with your movement...oh wait, you are. IF you believe that there are no "hide and seek" games occurring constantly, then I am certain that you don't understand the psychology of your audience while they watch coin magic. You must think people sit passively and don't think about the "how", and don't critically think at all while you use your "special and abnormal" moves rub to show how "vanished the coin is". Which makes me wonder how you could say, "It happens but it is your duty as a magician to leave your spectator with no explanation, otherwise your routine needs to be looked over again"...umm, TALK TO YOUR AUDIENCES, ASK THE HARD QUESTIONS, UNDERSTAND THE TRUTH. Please, prove me wrong. Post a video, I will offer you 50 dollars, no joke. Show me a coin video that doesn't consist of these issues, and I will pay. FIND ONE. I have found a handful in my 11 year career and jamming with many of the best in the coin world.

As for coin magic looking like it takes skill - few can make it not look like skill...this is CERTAINLY including Harbottle and Curtis Kam, to name a few. Coin magic routines have so many routines steps in them, it looks more like cherography than magic...but sure, a few make it look easy. I think it looks like skill because people don't get to suspend their disbelief with coins enough. They know you are hiding it somehow...in a skillful way. Hence this argument. Many sleights looked contrived, which makes it look like skill.


You have to read some Tommy Wonder books Orb...he has a theory called the "Ham Sandwich Theory"...sort of like your boat example. He states that magic is far more logical and impressive if someone asks or needs the item that is produced, rather than an arbitrary act of magic. As it relates better, because if you could do magic, would you do magic to obtain something needed (like in "I dream of Genii" or would you just magically make random stuff?

I want my magic to look like magic, even though we know it isn't real...because that leaves them no option but to believe. This is success - if someone seess "a move" it is bad as knowing exactly what you did...you broke the illusion. To be magic, the effect must do more than fool, it must look like magic...and guess what - not every effect looks like magic, just because it fools or gets reactions at first. Which brings me to what you said...people want to see magic, haha, yeah...wow, how often do you work doing close up magic?

MOST people hate, are unsure, or are nervous about "magic" and what that consists of because of what they think magic is - most pro's will tell you that people don't see magic in a favourable light. They see a nerd magician, rabbits out of hates, Angel's magic on A&E, and the cliche childrens magician at their neighbour's kid's birthday party. So, with this cliche lingering, people don't want to see magic...you will either add to that, or take it away. So, they don't want to see a magician, not one that has tricks they can see through, with cliche jokes and childish stories - they want to see more than magic, they want to be inspired. They want to see what magic would look like, if it were real - knowing that it isn't. MUCH magic is hurt by the reasons I listed, but none more than coin magic.

We have room to improve this area - I don't know why we argue over if it is broke or not, and not acknowledge we have a chance to make it better by working at it. Imagine if this same approach was taken early in cards...where would cards be?

I make my magic fool more than the eyes, I fool their minds - as this is where magic happens right? So, if magic happens in the mind, how does the visual nature of coin magic work against itself...the reasons I listed. The mind doesn't get fooled, because it is the eye it is working for. So doesn't it makes sense there exists some issues?
 

Orb

Jul 19, 2009
84
0
Sweden
1) You are completely missing my point. As far as I know (admittedly my card magic knowledge is limited) ACR is one of the most classical card effects, and it gets amazing reactions. Like we just discussed, it is indeed illogical, but how many times have you not maybe yourself amazed people with it? Or seen others totally blow peoples mind out by a simple illogical ACR routine?
The plot is completely illogical, make a card rise from the middle to the top, however your movements are motivated, all you're doing is inserting the card in the middle and it jumps back on top. What you present is magic, now how you chose to present that, presentational wise, is up to you.
Try to analyze the ACR, because it works, no doubt, but it's still illogical.

2) I still do not see why it would be harder to make a presentation for a card routine, than it would be for a coin routine. Please elaborate on that part.
Having a card being a detective, sure that's cheesy, it can still be used in metaphorical ways. As far as I'm concerned, presentational limitations have nothing to do with coin or card magic, it is only limited by your own imagination. You are yet to prove me wrong on this.

3) Admittedly, yes I know little of card magic. Sounds like you know little of coin magic. I'm surprised that you have not heard of click passes, I think it would be going into deep water saying click passes are more widely used within coin magic, so I'll just stick to saying that they are commonly used.
If I remember correctly, Darwin Ortiz mentions 3 things in his book Strong Magic that interests people: Money, People and Sex.
Now the emotional hook you're using is a card, which you in a way turn to theirs (it's their selection, not their card as in property). That is effective.
Now in coin magic, as soon as you present money, you already have an emotional hook on them (arguably not as big of a hook as a selected card). Since coins are becoming of less and less value we get to suffer from that, but nevertheless it's money, and they have affection for it.
Now what if you would borrow a coin from a spectator, and split it into two? You just duplicated their money, that is quite some hook. Now you can split it making 4 pieces, and then start a coins across routine.
You can borrow a low value coin from them, do some spellbounds and make it more and more valuable. The emotional hook is already there, and there are many ways to strengthen it.

4) I see your point, but you misunderstood me. I'm talking of vanishing something into thin air, making it disappear. As soon as you make a card disappear, they wont be thinking of your sleeves or your hands, they'll be thinking that there are 51 more identical backs that could possibly be covering that card. The first suspicion will be the deck of cards. But as much as I know, vanishing a coin into the center or into the top of the deck is quite popular?
Thought it needs to be clarified that you're speaking of a transpo of a card, and not a vanish. A vanish is when you make something completely disappear, a transpo is when you translocate something. Indeed they will wonder how it got there.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pza3N_X0cz8
You can PM me for the info of where to send the check.

Jokes aside, lets analyze that video. How would a layman react to it? Where would he guess the coins to be? He proves very well that both his hands are empty, none is cramped, none seem suspicious. I would love to hear your comments on this one.


"You have to read some Tommy Wonder books Orb...he has a theory called the "Ham Sandwich Theory"...sort of like your boat example. He states that magic is far more logical and impressive if someone asks or needs the item that is produced, rather than an arbitrary act of magic."

I would like to read that book, I was thinking of getting Designing Miracles first but I might head into this one then.
To answer your question... Who doesn't need money? Just like Darwin Ortiz explains, money is one of the things we all need today. Is it not impressive, if I then can produce that?


"As for coin magic looking like it takes skill - few can make it not look like skill...this is CERTAINLY including Harbottle and Curtis Kam, to name a few. Coin magic routines have so many routines steps in them, it looks more like cherography than magic.."

All I can say is that I disagree. If I could show you the Pendulum Hanging Coins routine that Kainoa had on the NYCS 5, I think it would open up your eyes.

"I make my magic fool more than the eyes, I fool their minds - as this is where magic happens right? So, if magic happens in the mind, how does the visual nature of coin magic work against itself...the reasons I listed. The mind doesn't get fooled, because it is the eye it is working for."

Seriously, how do you fool your spectators "minds" in a way coin magic can't? Do explain, you're stating a lot, proving nothing.
Are the eyes and mind not connected?
Wild coins routine? Any coins across routines? Are these the "mind foolers" that you're speaking of? Elaborate.
 
1) Yes I understand your point of being illogical, however like I said my entire presentation of storytelling makes sense of why it would come back to the top. The entire basis of it allows my card to be face down or face up and placed in the deck. If you have an actual script not dealing with a story, then yes it is usually proved illogical.

I'm in no way a real storyteller magician, I like to think of myself more than capable at doing it though. Stories incorporated in magic are able to express so many things that are usually illogical, but it makes a point and can express the little things even if they are not pointed out.

2) I think a card being used as a detective is indeed cheesy and if it fits your character then go ahead. However a serious magician could come up with something better I believe, however I only know of a few effects that you could use that card as a detective.

Anyways, the reason being is most coin routines are based off of coming across the hands, appearing in one hand from the other. That is an illogical concept, really think about it. I certainly could not come up with a story unless they were perhaps signed by the specs. If and only then I would have to use elaborate ways of making a scene for the coins, because any other way would be deemed as me jabbering about something useless.

It's just easier to come up with something for card than for coins because it is. I can't quite put it in words but it's just something that is naturally easier. Not necessarily just for me but it seems the majority of magicians, because how many coin magicians say, watch I'll place it on the table and I just push it, and it appears down here in my other hand. Think about that plot.

3) True the emotional hook is there but in my eyes and others there is still no magic. Of course this my belief because I understand there is some concept of hiding the coins in your hands in some way. It's just how coins work, many people growing up learn the french drop or classic palm, and while never even do decent with it then understand how easy the hands and fingers can hide and conceal something.

Emotional hook means nothing if you can not show to the audience the rest of what magic is supposed to look like.

4) Here is where I had no idea what you were talking about until I realized you were not responding to what I said but Morgician. I have no statement to make here as it does not concern my opinions.

I really liked that video, but in a way I really disliked it. The coins were very well done, and it wasn't the classic coins across in my hands etc. It was very well done, however the biggest thing I disliked was the reason it was good, a bit contradicting unfortunately.

The black hole was the whole basis for the effect actually working, however the black hole in the specs heads will not be fooled by it, they know it has nothing to do with the black hole but you. They may not understand what that is, but an audience is smart enough to know that little rubbery black circle is for show. I'm not saying some specs wouldn't see it as magic, but I believe more would understand the magician is doing everything while the black hole is simply misdirection.

I believe many magicians think they fool the mind when in fact they do not. More so of the younger generation more than anything, because a stereotype of magicians are done for a younger crowd and it's difficult to break through peoples stereotypes. Imagine a black man in the 30's to 40's trying to prove to a racist white man that he is in fact a real person that means just as much to the world as does the white man.

Yes I know comparing a real issue of prejudice to something as trivial as magic, not something most would look upon as a good example. Well besides the fact, think about it from w/e standpoint of a stereotype someone has of a magician. Not necessarily a younger magician but any problem you see a magician having based on someones classifying. Yet instead of the black man having heaps of time, you have a few minutes to prove your coin magic isn't just hands and fingers concealing something.

You have to fool in a way that doesn't mean "ha ha I'm better" or give off the idea of sleight of hand, or even making meaningless gestures that give off the illusion of wasting time. The problem with all of what I stated is more difficult to coin magicians because of the fact, they are illogical to the spectator. Making more money is indeed something they want to see, however look at the many magicians just making a coin appear across or underneath, something that has no value to the spectator other than a brief moment of entertainment.

This is why I got into mentalism, because I understand how I can make a point as to why I am doing something. I try to make all my card magic feel the exact same way, however I could not do it with enough effects for my repretoire and thus decided to try something new.


Also Morgician, did you get my private message from before.
 
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Nov 11, 2009
194
0
No offense Orb but I think you are being pretty stupid about all this. although I dont nessacarily agree with all of what Sherlock is saying I really dont agree with your jugment toward him.
Who cares if he doesnt like coin magic, who cares if he doesnt like to mess with cards, apparently he enjoys mentalism, that doesnt make him stupid or ignorent or anything else
personally I think you just need to get over it and move on.

anyways back to the subject
in my opinion magic is supposed to be illogical to a point
if it was logical how could it be amazing
2+2=4 is logical and not very amazing
but it cant be so illogical that it cant be followed which is what I think Sherlock is talking about
 
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