[Introduction] Hello, T11!

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by acme_myst, Nov 7, 2010.

  1. Hi,

    Although there is no official stickied introduction thread, I still figured I'd introduce myself here since I decided to start taking on a more participating role on these boards. Actually, I'm not aware of any "official" introduction tradition here, but I wanted to get it out of the way as to not clog up any of my other threads.

    So anyway, about me. First off, I'm a long-time lurker on these boards. Like I said, I finally decided to start posting. The reason I waited this long is twofold. First off, I finally have the feeling that I could make some meaningful contributions to this community. Secondly, I'm starting to run into some things that I would really like some interactive feedback on.

    First, here's some quick stats just for the heck of it:

    Real name: Thomas
    Age: 23
    Real life job: Videogame programmer
    Nationality: Dutch
    Deck of choice (I like to think you can learn a lot from this): Red circle backs
    Interests besides magic and the obvious: Science, programming, philosophy, psychology.

    Just to give you guys an impression of what experience I have, I'll run you through a quick history of my magic career.

    I first came into contact with magic at a very younge age, since my dad used to be a magician. Though just a hobbyist, he used to perform at some of me and my brother's birthday party's when we were young, and I even remember one time when he performed at my elementary school. Though this might sound rather lame when I type this right now, it still left an impression on me. When growing up I had always liked magic, but I never really took an active interest in it till I was about.. 18, I guess. I can't really remember the exact moment I decided to pick up a deck of cards and start practicing.
    Anyway, I worked my way through some of my dad's old books, and performed some (in hindsight, rather crappy..) tricks for friends and people in bars. At the time, these were mostly variations of "force a card, find it by looking through the deck". When I finally realised how much of an impact the internet could have on what I did, I took a complete detour: I ran into De'vo's Handlordz boards, and, having never seen something like that, thought it was the bomb. I spend the next year or so practicing flourishes, and not doing a lot of magic anymore. I then took an almost complete break from cards for about a year or so, though this was not premeditated and actually just kind of happened.
    Then, around januari of this year, I decided to come back to cards. When doing this, I decided on two things: First, I wanted to get back into magic, and second, if I were going to do this, I might as well do it right.
    For the past 10 months, I've scavenged the internet for every bit of information and inspiration I could find. I ordered books and DVDs's and worked my way through them. I selected effects and sleights, and tweaked them with my own handling, patter, and details. I religiously practiced for probably around an average of 4-6 hours a day. Every day, I spend hours thinking about why certain things would work and others won't.
    Every day, I was getting better at what I did. There was just one problem..
    I wasn't performing. I don't mean that I wasn't going out there and not performing, I mean I would hardly do it for my friends or family. I had the worst case of stage-freight ever. Whenever someone would ask me to do a cardtrick, I would shut down completely. My guts turned around, my hands started shaking, and I couldn't for the life of me bring myself to do so much as a DL. I was Perfectionism personified, and kept making excuses for myself.. "My controls aren't good enough..", "My DL is obvious", "I can't patter convincingly", and so on and so forth.
    Only recently, I made a huge breakthrough in this. I decided that if I was afraid my more difficult moves might
    be spotted, I would just use sub-optimal, but simpler, moves for now. So, I replaced my riffle pass with a
    rather easy implementation of the top-change. Though the move is a bit more suspicous, and it needs some kind of motivation to work it into an effect, it finally gave me the confidence I needed to start performing, at least to friends.
    And guess what? My guts still turn around, and my hands still shake a bit every now and then. But it is so worth it for the reactions you get.. It is truly a wonderful feeling to see that you've just taken somebody's view of how things work and completely turned that upside down.

    So, if there is anyone out there who is reading this, and who doesn't perform his tricks because he's too much of a perfectionist, I have this to say to you: Your magic doesn't have to be, and actually never will be, perfect. Though it is a good thing to always try and be the best that you can be, you must realize that for people to enjoy your magic, and therefore for your magic to have any meaning at all, it must be performed. You must find the confidence to start showing your magic to people. If you have to slightly weaken the effect to find that confidence, then fine. In the end, more people will have enjoyed your magic, and over time, you will find the experience and confidence to start using more difficult sleights. Over time, your magic will become leagues better than what you could achieve by just practicing at home. And most importantly, your magic will have value, as it is being used to entertain people.

    With that thought, I would like to end this first post. If you have read all the way through what has become a much longer story than what I anticipated, I thank you. Expect to see some threads of mine pop up around tomorrow or so, but right now it's starting to run deep into the night and I'm going to go to bed. I look forward to a hopefully fruitfull and mutually beneficial stay here.

  2. Thanks for your first post Thomas! Glad to always see someone new posting here on the forums. I guarantee your stay here will be quite rewarding and beneficial; you will gain great feedback and plentiful amounts of knowledge from members all across the world. I look forward to seeing more of your posts and threads from here on out! If you have any questions, drop me an email (in the signature below) and I will gladly respond.

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