How good should a card magican be after 3 monthes

Sep 18, 2020
29
2
A card magician will only be as good as their overall vision for magic. The cards are a vehicle to connect with others and share a moment of magic. Many of us began before the internet and learned to create magic with the simplest of moves. It seems nowadays that many people are enamoured by the flash of the video age, and are looking to keep up with the crowd... the real art of magic is defining your own path toward mastery.
 
May 11, 2017
64
54
30
Ukraine, Odessa
What sleights and tricks should a magicain that has been doing magic for 3 monthes be able to do?

It really depends on your goal and your style.
The purpose of magic is entertainment. So in my opinion, magician don't have to do some crazy sleight of hand moves.
If you are great with your presentation and you are able to connect with your audience, you could do a self working tricks with better results than a person that put years on learning some difficult sleights, but can't make it looks interesting and entertaining for the people.

If we are talking about the technical aspect, it really depends on how much time you are practicing.. When I was in stroke it was 10-12 hours a day sometimes and of course it gave some results..
And you may not be able to practice that much due to your own conditions.. the good news for the many great magic routines you don't have to..
Good luck with your practicing.
 
Hi all my name is Scott. I am a complete beginner and this is my first post. I didn't want to start a new thread when this thread is pretty closely related so I hope I'm not hijacking here. I started a month or so back when I couldn't shuffle without a flurry of flying cards and I'm really enjoying the learning process. Thanks to Google I quickly worked out the Royal Road was a good place to start. Now I've got the first chapter "The Overhand Shuffle" feeling pretty comfortable. I can shuffle much better but I've still got a looooong way to go.

I have "performed" a version of "Topsy Turvy" cards and "A Poker Players Picnic" for a mate (which went really well) and can comfortably repeat them but I want to make sure I'm not running before I'm walking as they say.

What I'd love to know from all of you out there is how you actually practiced in the early days. What I've been doing so far is work through the royal road but there is a lot of stuff there. So for example did you practice one thing over and over until you had it locked then move onto the next skill or did you practice one "trick" which may have multiple skills that need to be mastered. Would you spend 2 hours on one skill then switch to another skill and work on that for a few hours?

Then of course there's youtube which can be both a good and bad place to learn. It's inspiring to watch some of the tutorials from guys like Alex Pandrea or Chris Ramsay but it's hard not to get carried away trying that stuff, again getting ahead of myself.

I'm old enough and smart enough to know I need to learn the basics correctly so that I've got a solid base on which to build but it's so hard when there is so much exciting stuff out there to learn. It's kind of overwhelming. So any guidance or suggestions you guys have is much appreciated.

Cheers Scott.
 
Jul 26, 2016
556
760
Hi Scott,

Imagine you were in a hotel lobby or maybe a student lounge and someone sat down at the piano and played a beautiful piece of music flawlessly, then they got up and left the room. In that situation you (and/or others present) might be prompted to think or say, "Wow, that's one of the best piano players I've ever heard!" But also imagine that, unbeknownst to you, or anyone else in the room, that happened to be the one and only piano piece that individual knew or could play. Still, the impression he/she made upon the listener(s) was profound and memorable, and the enjoyment given was great.

Now, contrast this scenario with a second piano player in that same room playing 10 or 15 pieces on the piano while you are sitting there, but the player has none of them mastered, and so the performances - although numerous - are mediocre at best. Many, many magicians are like that second piano player.

With all the moves and tricks and material out there, it is hard not to be like the proverbial kid in a candy store. The kid wants to gorge him/herself with the different candies, but all they end up with is a tummy ache. Before moving on to more tricks or moves, make yourself an artist of the highest order with one trick, so that it is a masterpiece when you perform for someone - they deserve that, and so do you.
 
Sep 18, 2020
29
2
Hi Scott, you're on the right path already. There is so much information available nowadays that it's easy to become overwhelmed. Getting the basics down is key. I have pm'd you with more details, but in essence you need only learn a few simple sleights and you could create endlessly... only being limited by your imagination.
 
Jun 18, 2019
543
288
17
West Bengal, India
Hey there Scott!


What I've been doing so far is work through the royal road but there is a lot of stuff there.
For the record, the Royal Road to Card Magic is a very hyped magic book, and even then it feels as if magicians do injustice to the book in describing how brilliant it is.

What I'd love to know from all of you out there is how you actually practiced in the early days. What I've been doing so far is work through the royal road but there is a lot of stuff there. So for example did you practice one thing over and over until you had it locked then move onto the next skill or did you practice one "trick" which may have multiple skills that need to be mastered. Would you spend 2 hours on one skill then switch to another skill and work on that for a few hours?

My practice methods haven't changed as much, just become more thorough.

Which approach I follow, out of the two you've mentioned, depends on what my first motivation was and what my end goal is.

A) First Motivation ---> Seeing an amazing effect (eg; a seemingly miraculous card colour change):-

I'll first perfect the technique. I'll keep doing that single move over and over again, allowing myself to be terrible. Then, I'll switch on my laptop's webcam or just my phone's front camera to see myself do the sleight. After that I'll record myself doing the sleight (not see myself simultaneously), watch it, nitpick, repeat. When I can fool myself, then I'll devise a bare-bones trick (eg; here's you card, oh wait that's a wrong card [insert colour change] BOOM! Here's your correct card.) with that sleight. This trick isn't for performing to people, just for me to put the sleight in the context of a performance and to critique how I handle the sleight outside the flow of repetition (there's a world of difference in nailing a sleight when you're constantly repeating it, and nailing a sleight when you do it only once, out of the blue, impromptu).

Then, I wonder if I can cook up any way that the sleight can be used in a larger effect where it isn't unnecessary. If it can't, I'm comfortable in performing it for the camera, for a great Instagram post. If it can, I proceed to the next stages of devising an effect.

End Goal ---> Surprising eye-candy

B) First Motivation ---> Seeing a mind-blowing effect that I want to learn:-

(Assumption: I know the method/have the sources to learn the method)

The only difference is that there's more repetition in A) and more rehearsal in B).

End Goal ---> The effect.

***

I don't have or don't prioritize time goals. I have move goals. I figure out two or three sleights I want to have learned by the end of, say, half a year. I don't usually switch up sleights in between (I don't practice the top change alongside the spread pass) unless they use completely different props (I may practice the top change alongside the coin retention vanish) or naturally fit together (I may practice the pinky break alongside the classic pass). Usually, I figure out one sleight and one card flourish I want to focus on (time limits unknown) and move from there. That gives me enough variety.

Then of course there's youtube which can be both a good and bad place to learn. It's inspiring to watch some of the tutorials from guys like Alex Pandrea or Chris Ramsay but it's hard not to get carried away trying that stuff, again getting ahead of myself.

Yes but being aware of more advance moves won't cause any harm. The only thing you need to do as you said, is keep your vision straight and not get overwhelmed by the amount of information that is being handed to you today.


I'm old enough and smart enough to know I need to learn the basics correctly so that I've got a solid base on which to build but it's so hard when there is so much exciting stuff out there to learn. It's kind of overwhelming. So any guidance or suggestions you guys have is much appreciated.

If you're getting overwhelmed by moves, I'd suggest the 'learning effects' approach. Say you want to do a pick a card effect. Find out an aesthetic way to display cards and have one selected, find out a deceptive way to control it to the top or bottom, find out a way to reveal it.

Then, go ahead find out a way to force a card.

Then find out a way to peek the card.

Then find out a better way to control the card, force the card, peek the card, reveal the card. Proceed in this manner.

If you still find yourself getting overwhelmed, I'd suggest you keep watching whatever you're watching as brain-food, but mainly focus on RRTCM. The book is structured really, really well. If you find that you're getting nowhere, then maybe you set the goals unrealistically high. If you want your first ever control to be the Bow-to-Stern control, then that's too much. It'll burn you out right in the beginning. The thumb rule is that your first few moves should take no more than a week or two to perfect. Again, if you manage to go through enough of the RRTCM, you'll have a great base.

Once you have the great base, jump off. Learn whatever and do whatever. It sounds overwhelming because it is. But it won't feel overwhelming because surprise,

Your goal isn't to learn all the moves. You can spend the rest of your life unable to do the bulk of sleights out there.


Your goal is to do great magic. If you feel you can do great magic with a double undercut as your control, go ahead. A few weeks later you'll feel the need to learn a pass. Then you'll want to learn how to cull cards.

You shouldn't do these things because you want to learn a pass or a cull. You should be doing these things because you want to make that pick a card trick look so good that it borderlines on real magic.

Don't launch yourself to an unknown territory right from the get-go. Work up.
 

RealityOne

Moderator
Nov 1, 2009
3,578
3,849
New Jersey
I recommend Card College Volumes 1 and 2 over Royal Road. It is easier to learn from them.

I'd say go through those books (or even Royal Road), learn the sleights and learn to perform the effects using the sleights. It is learning the effects that gives us motivation. After those two (or one if you stick with RRTCM) books, then go through other books and read effects and learn the ones that appeal to you.
 
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Hi Scott,

Imagine you were in a hotel lobby or maybe a student lounge and someone sat down at the piano and played a beautiful piece of music flawlessly, then they got up and left the room. In that situation you (and/or others present) might be prompted to think or say, "Wow, that's one of the best piano players I've ever heard!" But also imagine that, unbeknownst to you, or anyone else in the room, that happened to be the one and only piano piece that individual knew or could play. Still, the impression he/she made upon the listener(s) was profound and memorable, and the enjoyment given was great.

Thanks very much for your reply Al e Cat Dabra. Great analogy mate and I get it. I have seen both good a great magic performances and you are right. When I was a kid in high school I remember the whole school unexpectedly was sent to the gymnasium. As we walked in there was a guy dressed as a clown on the stage who stood there quietly as we filed in. Once we were all settled he started his performance. For the next 30-40minutes everyone in that place was in awe. He was a master. I've also seen others that were entertaining for sure but none measured up to this guy.

With all the moves and tricks and material out there, it is hard not to be like the proverbial kid in a candy store. The kid wants to gorge him/herself with the different candies, but all they end up with is a tummy ache. Before moving on to more tricks or moves, make yourself an artist of the highest order with one trick, so that it is a masterpiece when you perform for someone - they deserve that, and so do you.

One of the reasons I am starting this journey is to teach myself to be more patient so yes it's hard not to get carried away. It's fun, exciting and challenging learning this art so yep I'll have to restrain myself.
 
Hi Scott, you're on the right path already. There is so much information available nowadays that it's easy to become overwhelmed. Getting the basics down is key. I have pm'd you with more details, but in essence you need only learn a few simple sleights and you could create endlessly... only being limited by your imagination.

Much appreciated for your time Dragonfly. I'll check out your PM and get back to you.

Cheers Scott.
 
Hey there Scott!
For the record, the Royal Road to Card Magic is a very hyped magic book, and even then it feels as if magicians do injustice to the book in describing how brilliant it is.

It's definitely a good resource. I will admit to being a little confused by some of the descriptions in there on occasion but I'm getting there.

My practice methods haven't changed as much, just become more thorough.

Which approach I follow, out of the two you've mentioned, depends on what my first motivation was and what my end goal is.

A) First Motivation ---> Seeing an amazing effect (eg; a seemingly miraculous card colour change):-

I'll first perfect the technique. I'll keep doing that single move over and over again, allowing myself to be terrible. Then, I'll switch on my laptop's webcam or just my phone's front camera to see myself do the sleight. After that I'll record myself doing the sleight (not see myself simultaneously), watch it, nitpick, repeat. When I can fool myself, then I'll devise a bare-bones trick (eg; here's you card, oh wait that's a wrong card [insert colour change] BOOM! Here's your correct card.) with that sleight. This trick isn't for performing to people, just for me to put the sleight in the context of a performance and to critique how I handle the sleight outside the flow of repetition (there's a world of difference in nailing a sleight when you're constantly repeating it, and nailing a sleight when you do it only once, out of the blue, impromptu).

Then, I wonder if I can cook up any way that the sleight can be used in a larger effect where it isn't unnecessary. If it can't, I'm comfortable in performing it for the camera, for a great Instagram post. If it can, I proceed to the next stages of devising an effect.

End Goal ---> Surprising eye-candy

B) First Motivation ---> Seeing a mind-blowing effect that I want to learn:-

(Assumption: I know the method/have the sources to learn the method)

The only difference is that there's more repetition in A) and more rehearsal in B).

End Goal ---> The effect.

Thanks very much MohanaMisra for the very detailed reply. I agree, from my experience in other endeavours, I definitely learn better when I see the part as it fits in the whole and therefore know why I'm doing something. Your approach looks like a good way to go for the way I learn.



***

I don't have or don't prioritize time goals. I have move goals. I figure out two or three sleights I want to have learned by the end of, say, half a year. I don't usually switch up sleights in between (I don't practice the top change alongside the spread pass) unless they use completely different props (I may practice the top change alongside the coin retention vanish) or naturally fit together (I may practice the pinky break alongside the classic pass). Usually, I figure out one sleight and one card flourish I want to focus on (time limits unknown) and move from there. That gives me enough variety.

Thanks this also is a great help.

Yes but being aware of more advance moves won't cause any harm. The only thing you need to do as you said, is keep your vision straight and not get overwhelmed by the amount of information that is being handed to you today.

This definitely helps with motivation, knowing the potential out there and seeing what people are doing.




If you're getting overwhelmed by moves, I'd suggest the 'learning effects' approach. Say you want to do a pick a card effect. Find out an aesthetic way to display cards and have one selected, find out a deceptive way to control it to the top or bottom, find out a way to reveal it.

Then, go ahead find out a way to force a card.

Then find out a way to peek the card.

Then find out a better way to control the card, force the card, peek the card, reveal the card. Proceed in this manner.

If you still find yourself getting overwhelmed, I'd suggest you keep watching whatever you're watching as brain-food, but mainly focus on RRTCM. The book is structured really, really well. If you find that you're getting nowhere, then maybe you set the goals unrealistically high. If you want your first ever control to be the Bow-to-Stern control, then that's too much. It'll burn you out right in the beginning. The thumb rule is that your first few moves should take no more than a week or two to perfect. Again, if you manage to go through enough of the RRTCM, you'll have a great base.

Once you have the great base, jump off. Learn whatever and do whatever. It sounds overwhelming because it is. But it won't feel overwhelming because surprise,

Your goal isn't to learn all the moves. You can spend the rest of your life unable to do the bulk of sleights out there.


Your goal is to do great magic. If you feel you can do great magic with a double undercut as your control, go ahead. A few weeks later you'll feel the need to learn a pass. Then you'll want to learn how to cull cards.

You shouldn't do these things because you want to learn a pass or a cull. You should be doing these things because you want to make that pick a card trick look so good that it borderlines on real magic.

Don't launch yourself to an unknown territory right from the get-go. Work up.

I like this way of looking at things too, the idea that one thing morphs into the next as you learn new ways of doing things. Again, thanks for the very detailed reply it is greatly appreciated.

Cheers Scott.
 
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I recommend Card College Volumes 1 and 2 over Royal Road. It is easier to learn from them.

I'd say go through those books (or even Royal Road), learn the sleights and learn to perform the effects using the sleights. It is learning the effects that gives us motivation. After those two (or one if you stick with RRTCM) books, then go through other books and read effects and learn the ones that appeal to you.
Thanks RealityOne, I'll check them out. One thing I'm finding with RRTCM is that often the effects are a little confusing which then makes it difficult to get enthusiastic about. If I understand it and how it should look I feel I'll be better at it. Time will tell.
 
Hey there Scott!
Then, I'll switch on my laptop's webcam or just my phone's front camera to see myself do the sleight. After that I'll record myself doing the sleight (not see myself simultaneously), watch it, nitpick, repeat. When I can fool myself, then I'll devise a bare-bones trick[/QUOTE

Oh and I meant to say, excellent idea I will definitely do this.

Cheers Scott.
 
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