The most important peices of magic knowled. Agree?

Discussion in 'Magic Forum' started by AgicMike, Feb 21, 2013.

  1. 1-Double Lift
    2-The Pass(Classic or Herman)
    3-Breaks
    Anything that you think surpasses these? Or that should be up there with them?
     
  2. You don't need any of those if you have good misdirection, but good moves help. I've pulled off the Invisible Deck with a normal deck by using misdirection. I also got lucky, but that's beside the point. I essentially got away with murder because I had their attention where I wanted it.

    As far as those being the most important, I don't know. I believe, and someone will correct me if I'm wrong, that it was Dai Vernon who said that you need one control, one force, and a double lift to do almost every trick in card magic. He didn't say what control, force or double lift, he just said you needed those three things. Since this is the card magic forum we won't bring in every other form of magic out there, but if we did, your list would be highly inadequate.
     
  3. "The magic happens in the mind of the spectator."

    That`s the single most important aspect of any magic in my opinion. Everything else are just tools to make this happen ;)
     
  4. well said, both of you.
     
  5. yes i agree with your last statement
     
  6. Eugene Burger doesn't use a double lift in his performances. The more you learn about card magic, the less important a double lift becomes. The pass is usually used o control a single card rather than its intended purpose of reversing a cut to maintain the order of a deck. Neither are fundamental.

    The proper way to hold a break is fundamental, as is the proper way to hold a deck in dealers grip or overhand (Biddle) grip, to do a riffle shuffle or an overhand shuffle, etc.

    Your statement is like saying, "the most important tools for building a house are a hammer, a radial arm saw and a pipe wrench." They are useful tools, but if that is all you have you won't be able to build a dog house.

    As you progress in card magic, you will learn that the most important sleight is the one that fits best into an effect. Let me explain. You system know a cross cut force or a classic force but those forces are useless if you want to force an odd backed card. A Hindu force would work better, as would a riffle force with a double lift or Sankey's Witchata Slip. What if you have to force two cards? Similar with a control. A double undercut is great for a single card, but what if you have to control four cards? Then you need an Elias Multiple Shift or a variation (see Bannon's Smoke and Mirrors). What if you need to control a card to the bottom? Need a different control. Your list doesn't even address any false counts (Hamman, Jordan, Elmsley, etc.) or any palming techniques.

    Ultimately, the most important parts of a magic effect are plot (what happens), method (the sleights used) and presentation (what you say to draw the audience into the effect, including principles of misdirection, patter, etc.). As you progress as a magician, you will be exposed to more plots, more methods and different presentations. You will become a better magician as you build a toolbox that has a variety of plots, a variety of methods and a variety of presentations.
     
  7. This is a really good point and is in line with a lot Ascanio's lecture notes. RealityOne, when you learn sleights, do you record/analyze the pros and cons of each in some way? The example of the odd-backed card and the need for a variety of forces is a great point. Another example (from Helder's excellent book "reflections") that is really telling for me is the necessity to use different controls/forces for different spectator situations. If a method calls for a dribble control or a riffle/slip force, then you would want to select a spectator farther away from your performance space. If you want them to pick a card and they are right next to you, why not just spread the deck and let them take one? Reasoning: to get everyone involved, we want people in the back to have a choice, but rather than having them come up, we'll just select one in that manner so we can show everyone. So when putting together a "toolbox", cataloguing the different strengths and weaknesses of the particular method/sleight seems important. How do you go about that analysis?
     
  8. I very much consider myself a student of Ascanio, Giobbi's and Tamariz.

    To answer your question, I don't write the pros and cons down. I wish I was that organized! What typically ends up happening is that I decide I need to do something (force a card, control a card, change a card, reverse a card) and then I look for a method. I go throughh what I've learned to see if anything fits. Then I'll go the Denis Behr's archive and use that to reference all possible options in the books that I own. My first starting point often is Card College. Often that will have references to the history or variations of a sleight that aren't in the Behr Archive. I am very fortunate to know a couple of magicians that have a bibliographic memory regarding techniques and they will provided a number of ideas and references.

    Also, when I learn a sleight, I tend to read several descriptions of it and select the handling that is closest to my style (which is minimalist in that I want as little unnecessary movement as possible). Often that is the method in Card College but sometimes it is a variation found elsewhere. There are subtle differences in technique that make large differences in style. That process also allows me to remember variations in method that might apply in other circumstances.

    So the answer is I use what I remember and then do research. Between the two, I usually come up with a method.
     
  9. Denis Behr's archive is such an amazing resource, especially as my library is starting to get to the point where I know that I read something somewhere, but can't remember exactly what it is. Especially since most resources explain/modify moves in the context of the effect, it can be hard to track down a particular piece (say a packet switch), and the Behr archive incorporates the sleights as separate entries.

    One of the things that I am puzzling over is how to modify/select particular sleights based on situations. Part of this is "tweaking" a technique for a particular event takes time and practice, and when I performance test things, I often wonder whether it is a question of technique or a question of construction that causes problems (particular in my mirror/video self-assessment). Essentially, is it that I am not doing the move as smoothly as I need to? Is it that I haven't addressed the cover/attention direction appropriately? Or is it that the move I've selected just won't work in that scenario? This is a difficult question to answer, but I think that this puzzle, and the CONSTRUCTION of an effect (as it appears in the mind of the spectator) seems to hinge on it.

    Do you have any tips for seeing your own work through the eyes of the spectator/returning to our pre-magician naivete?
     
  10. That's tough. As you have learned, there are a lot of variable that go into the routine. It is, unfortunately trial and error.

    One technique to view the effect as a lay spectator is to write down what happens in the effect. Even using the word "effect" rather than "tricks" evidences a focus on what happens rather than how it happens.

    The next step is to perform as if the effect was real. That means the sleights need to be technically correct and done automatically. It also means you believe the reality you are presenting to the spectators. <<The best example of this is my cups and balls final loads - I've practiced until I don't realize I'm doing it. That helps me believe that I'm just taking the little ball out of the cup and putting in my pocket. I don't realize I'm doing the load, so my experience is the same as the spectator's when I reveal the load.>>

    One way of getting to this point is to perform the sleights doing what it appears that you are doing. If you are doing a retention vanish, practice putting the coin in your hand. Get used to that motion and then add the sleights. What the spectator sees shouldn't be any different. You can also do this on a larger level for a whole routine. This is a great point of comparison for the actual routine (with sleights).

    Finally, find a trusted lay spectator that will give an honest critique. My wife does that for me. She can identify what "looks funny" where I flash, what doesn't make sense. As you keep doing this with the same person they do learn something about magic, which actually pushes your performances to be better. You can also ask spectators after you are done performing what the thought about an effect. You often will get great responses.
     
  11. I appreciate all of your responses and opinions, and i'll remember what you all hav to say. I've only been doing magic for 4 months now and everyday I see that there is something new to amaze.
     
  12. #12 ChrisWiens, Mar 4, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 4, 2013
    Even if you`re doing magic for XX+ years, this will probably not change (much) ;)
    Tamariz, one of the most knowledgable magicians alive (he`s doing magic for 60 years now and has forgotten more about magic than people like me will ever learn), once said that he still is an apprentice of the magic art. I don`t think that any artform can be really mastered. It always is a learning process. And that`s the reason it`ll never get boring I guess.
    Good thing, isn`t it ?
     
  13. yes i agree.
     

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