How far can one go in card magic without paying for any tricks or tutorials?

Discussion in 'Magic Forum' started by Karo-K54, Jan 31, 2018.

  1. There are many channels out there on YouTube which teach magic, but obviously they won't teach everything they know for free. Some sleights are unclear on YouTube videos, and need to be more comprehensively explained and taught; some tricks can only be revealed by buying it from the creator etc. So how far can one go (in card magic and cardistry) if he has to keep his wallet unopened for the time being?

    (Only talking about sleights and tricks here, not gimmicks or related.)
  2. The answer is you can learn a bunch of tricks but you will not really learn the proper techniques and not really learn about presentation and character.

    Most videos focus on the performers hands. So when someone performs they look at their hands. When they do that, the audience looks at their hands. Additionally, most videos have a very closed handling of the deck and the focus is on the spectator not seeing the actual move as opposed to not realizing that some move was done.
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.
  3. For Cardistry/flourishing, you can learn a lot without ever paying for anything other than cards. That is a physical skill more related to juggling than magic, which evolved from contact juggling and other forms of object manipulation.

    For magic, I agree with RealityOne completely. You can learn some tricks, that's it.
    Antonio Diavolo and Karo-K54 like this.
  4. Well, you did not include books in your list :)
    Buy Royal Road, it is a good investment. But yes, I feel Asad on 52 kards is quite honest with his teaching (I use the DL he does, and it is DOPE).
    But yes, to really advance you need books. If you don't wanna buy tricks or tutorial DVDs, I think only books will carry you almost all the way through :)

    And if you exclude books too...I guess you will be able to get a taste of the amazing reactions good card magic gets and then, you will be motivated to loosen your pocket a bit :D
    So all in all, without investing in ANYTHING, you will get enough food for thought for a year maybe (?) then, whether you buy anything else, some good books should be on your shopping list.
    Karo-K54 likes this.
  5. Yes, I subscribe to 52Kards and SankeyMagic and a few other channels, and mainly learn from them. What's better, though, books or videos?
  6. A mixture of both, which will probably begin as being heavy on the video end, then shift to heavy on books over time, depending on how dedicated you are.
    Karo-K54 likes this.
  7. Well, as Christopher said...
    I use a mixture too.
    Just works...
  8. @Karo-K54 - I am glad that you asked this question. As is the case with so many things in life, there is good and bad on YouTube. Given that your budget may be kind of tight right now, I believe it will certainly be helpful to your magical development to find the good among the material that is currently available at no monetary cost. I recommend that you check out the O'Brien Magic videos on YT. He is one of our moderators here on the Forum and generously shares his knowledge (as other fine artists on the Forum do, as well).

    It seems that your primary interest is card magic. Michael O'Brien does some card magic, as well as other types of magic. It's all creative, carefully thought out and audience-tested, since he makes his living as a magician. While books can be an excellent learning tool, a real advantage of a video of an excellent performer in action, captured while entertaining a real audience, is a golden opportunity to see the presentation of a seasoned and sparkling performer in action (which in my humble opinion Michael is).

    That is not to say we should imitate anyone else, but what we can learn from watching people who know how to deliver a trick or routine entertainingly, with great presentation, is so valuable and can be a wonderful inspiration to develop our own entertaining style, that suits us. The end result: We can improve as performers, beyond just learning the moves and the tricks, which are important, but only a part of it. As you are probably already aware, the presentation is a huge part of having a strong impact on the spectators.
  9. Thanks for the love @Al e Cat Dabra :)

    To answer the OP. Honestly you will learn the most from several areas. If you just focus on one then you will be missing out on other aspects. For example, one might learn a sleight or trick on YouTube for free, then learn about performance theory and how to present that trick by reading a book, then may listen to an audio book about how to perform for an audience on stage. You take all of that knowledge and apply it to your character and your performance. Then you test it for yourself to see what works. If you are ONLY watching YouTube videos you are missing out on a ton of other stuff.

    I am trying my best to be the channel that doesn’t just teach a bunch of tricks without at the very least applying real world performance theory to it lol but there is nothing better than learning the trick from the creator themself either by reading a book or watching them teach it on a video.

    Lastly I will reiterate that you should also be thinking about theory and performance as well. Maybe even take a theatre class if you can. It will help a ton!

    Hope this helps.
  10. Everything these guys said is true.

    For free, you can go pretty far if your local library has magic books...
    Check out there website. My Library had ebook versions of the Royal Road, the Encyclopedia of Card Tricks, Scarne on cards, a Karl Fulve's card book, Joshua Jay's Complete Course, and a few more books on card magic.

    If you work on your presentation, half of those books are probably good enough to get you to an "elite" level, if you study the books well, practice, and work on your performance.
    Karo-K54 and Al e Cat Dabra like this.
  11. As far as you want. But it will take more effort than watching a video on YouTube. There are treasures to be had for free thanks to the Public Domain. All Dover's publications are in the public domain including Expert Card Technique (1st Editon).

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