Hatin on Gimmicks

Discussion in 'Product Questions and Reviews' started by Jrishton, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. #1 Jrishton, Nov 8, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 10, 2012
    Don't like gimmicks

    I HATE using gimmicks. I like to do card tricks and magic out of skill. I'm not the type of person that's going to walk around with rubber bands and wires fixed to objects everywhere. I like to do things out of pure skill on the spur of the moment. I want people coming to ME for great tricks, I don't walk around with rubberbands coming out of my sleeves or invisible strings, asking people if they want to see a magic trick. I've noticed that a lot of tricks require gimmicks on this site, but are there any that I can learn with my fingers? Not with a supply kit? I'm looking for some good old-fashioned sleight of hand and trickery. Help me out?
  2. Check out pretty much anything by Dan and Dave Buck, and the stuff they have available on their site.
  3. Get a copy of The Expert at the Card Table, and all volumes of Card College and you've got everything you need as far as skills. Of course, you'll need the presentation and performance skills to make it interesting.
  4. Thanks guys :) and yeah, I really need to get that book. I've seen so many references...
  5. I'm curious. If you would indulge me for a second, I have a question. Can you qualify that statement beyond the tissue-thin excuses you just gave?
  6. I love gimmicks for the versatility they provide and the things they make possible. Twilight Angles, for example, is one of the best card tricks in existence, and it wouldn't be possible without a gaffed card. I hate gimmicks because I always leave them at home, therefore, I never use them. As far as resources go, it depends on what kind of magic you're looking for. Cards, coins, ropes, random junk? each of those things has its own specific set of resources to go with it. Great card magic resources have already been mentioned. If you want other stuff, let us know.
  7. #8 WyattSB, Nov 9, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 15, 2012
    We do the impossible, thats what magic is, to most people it doesn't matter how you do it. But I can certainly sympathise with the purist attitude, its like someone has just handed you this object, doesn't matter what it is, and somehow you can do something with it that is not possible, to the magician that sounds much more appealing than having a gimmick meaning that its not really 'you' doing the magic, but to the spectator, its the same. Everyone loves a good impromptu trick with no preparation almost every single magic store will list whther or not its impromptu or gimmicked or whatever on the page, so you shouldn't really need to ask here, but I would recommend all of Daniel Garcia's stuff, and all of Jay Sankey stuff, I realise they both use a lot of gimmicks, but they are certainly usable, and a large majority of their work is impromptu, specifically look at anytime anywhere by Sankey.

    If you're specifically looking for difficult sleight of hand to do, someone has already suggested Jason England, who will do you well, but something that is not likely to come up is the Devil's Picture book by Derren Brown, it has some really great and difficult sleight of hand and other magic in it, absolutely not for beginners though.
  8. This is the hardest question I've ever answered in my life, hahaha. I am not into magic, but I have learned a lot of sleights and tricks without gimmicks. I got into magic about three years ago, and learned much. I quit after a long time because it seemed like every trick had a tube running up your arm or involved some sort of setup that I just wasn't willing to use. There are serious magicians out there who do use gimmicks and I have absolutely nothing against that, and I've seen for myself, they make for incredible magic, but I'm just not willing to put in the time or effort for a trick that I can ONLY use with a setup. I own some trick decks and coins, but when someone asks me to do a trick that requires one, I have no choice but to turn them down because I can't do it on the spur of the moment. I've been looking through websites and on the wire, trying to find good tricks that I can do 24/7 with any deck or coin, but I've had the same problem as before... I can't find them
  9. >Doing tricks on the "spur of the moment"
    >Using a deck of cards

    If you're going to carry a deck of cards around on you 24/7, then what difference does one extra prop make?
  10. I just saw this and had to comment, hatin' isn't a word, hating however is a word....but other then that, gimmicks add an extra level of beauty to some effects, but if you don't like gimmick's some artists that are just sleight of hand are Jason England, Zach Mueller, Dan & Dave Buck, and even though some of his stuff is gimmicked Eric Jones still has a great level of smooth sleight of hand.
  11. The way I see it, it's a matter of for whom you are doing magic. If you don't use gimmicks because you think they are lame or whatever, I suspect that you are doing magic for yourself. Which is fine.

    However, if one is doing magic for their spectators, then the ends justify the means. I dislike using gimmicks myself, but I do use them because there's things that enhance the effect for the spectators that simply cannot be done via sleight of hand.

    I generally learn at least two versions of any effect I perform regularly. One of which will be impromptu so that I can create the effect whenever the chance comes up, even if I don't have the gimmick. This also allows me to create conflicting stories from my spectators. By that I mean a situation where Spectator A says, "Well, he made this fork bend right in front of my eyes, but I think he bent it when I wasn't looking" and Spectator B says, "That can't be it, when he did it for me the fork bent in my hand!"

    If one is going to create the most powerful, magical experiences possible, gimmicks or setups will occasionally be necessary.
  12. I don't have anything against having a quarter-bite coin in my pocket or a few gaff cards in my deck, but it's one thing to carry around a deck, and it's another thing to always have multiple decks and backup plans.
  13. Haha, I didn't mean to be attracting this much attention because I don't like using gimmicks. I know gimmicks are great, but I never have them when I need them, I can't carry around a bunch of materials without the sole purpose of doing magic, and I am not serious enough to put the effort into making them or getting them ready. I like to be able to do a good trick with any deck 24/7. I don't like having to turn people down because I'm not setup for the trick they want to see.
  14. It's a subject that tends to rise the ire of many magicians.

    As I said, if you don't like turning people down, then only do tricks for which you can find multiple methods.

    As for pure sleight of hand with cards, Card College has everything you will ever need. I believe I've mentioned that already. After studying that for some time you can also get some one-off tricks to spice things up. I do an ACR that uses bits from Jason England, Aaron Fisher, Dan & Dave, Chris Kenner, Jay Sankey, Daryl, Derren Brown and Shawn Farquhar. Maybe more.

    For coins, look no further than Bobo's Modern Coin Magic. That's the book Apollo Robbins started with and he studied it for years. It's a huge wealth of knowledge.
  15. Thank you :) ill definitely look into some of those. Jason England really knows what he's doing from what I've seen so far...
  16. I just wanted to throw in my two cents.
    I can appreciate the idea of keeping away from gimmicks; but, I believe that this notion is a product of ignorance regarding the conventional use of a gimmick. To explain, most people, as you have demonstrated, that don't care for gimmicks believe that it either degrades or inconveniences their performance. This expectation couldn't be farther from the truth. Instead of regarding a gimmick as something that "does the work", take control of how the gimmick aids to your performance. Not only is a gimmick an instrument to enhance your performance, but it allows you to focus on your presentation and hone the art of astonishment.
    I can, however, understand the whole "body-rig" idea and it's fallacies. Even using an M5, for me, was too much of a hassle.
  17. I too find it tiresome to carry around bulky devices but we shouldn't be looking at impromptu magic as a substitute for magic you could do if only you had this gimmick on you. Some of my strongest material is magic that I can do anywhere with borrowed objects but perhaps that is what makes it strong?
  18. Gimmicks are a bit of a touchy topic I guess. In one view, gimmicks like the invisible deck are simply great for amazing some people, and if the gimmick is used well with the right amount of showmanship, it can be incredibly effective. On the other hand, the gimmick does all the work for you, and yes they can be very bulky or can put you in difficult situations depending on the type of spectators you have. I tend to dislike things like gaffed cards, unless I can develop an appropriate routine to use them in. There's no point walking up to someone, forcing them a card and saying "Here, watch as I make your card all weird." There's no showmanship to it and there's no build up or anything.
  19. Gimmicks don't do all the work. If that were true you could set an invisible deck on the table and it would cut itself and reveal the card without ever touching the deck.

    What you're describing at the end of your post has nothing to do with gimmicks, but with poor showmanship. A pure sleight of hand trick won't be any better than a gimmicked one if you can't perform well.

    Contrary to what many people think, gimmicks require a set of skills too use well that is just as comprehensive as pure sleight of hand.

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