Timing with the palm

Discussion in 'Magic Forum' started by William Karlsson, Dec 13, 2013.

  1. ''Timing with palming''. Poetic? Nah.

    I have during about 6-8 months been working on palming. I do the single card palm described in RRTCM - and one slight variation of the Joe Berg palm. What I would like to get is feedback and tips on timing with palming. The timing falls within how you've written your patter - of course - but maybe you've got some special ninja tips or tricks to change the focus of attention.

    I don't really know when to palm. It says in RRTCM that you should ''look up and while taking the deck with your other hand - performing the palm''. It would be fun to hear about your palming experiences and how you've handled problems and different types of audiences.

  2. I palm at the offbeat, if that makes any sense. For example, lets say that I want to do a top card palm. I place the card on top, look up to the spectator and indicate him/her to shuffle, and a perform the sleight as they look up to meet my eyes.
  3. A two-handed palm should take place the moment the hands come together, in a natural gesture while the spectators are looking somewhere other than your hands.

    How you get them to look somewhere other than your hands depends on your performance style and character.
  4. "Hey, William. *Palm* Do you want to know what the secret is?"

    That same thing can be applied to just about any move really. (Note: that was just a basic generalization, but anything like that WILL usually work.)
  5. The most important part of the palm (whatever palm its is) you have a reason to bring the hands together, it has to be an in-transit action. If you get that right, the timing doesn't come into as much, the move will just pass the audience by, hidden is a off beat moment. Trying something like squaring the deck after a dribble or something (i cant stand seeing people square a already squared deck!).
  6. In-transit actions become psychologically invisible (Ascanio). Essentially, if in the process of reaching for a pen, I move the deck from hand to hand, the transfer of the deck from hand to hand becomes psychologically invisible because it only minimally registers as an action. It is trumped by the clearly motivated purpose of reaching for the pen, so if moments later you asked a spectator what the magician did, they would say "picked up a pen". Structuring a routine so that the moment for the palm is hidden within an in-transit action would be a good idea. If you can also structure a way to motivate holding out, the better off the whole sequence will be. Ascanio has an entire essay devoted to the psychology of the palm in "Structural Conception of Magic".

    Another issue is palming the card too late. If they are waiting for something to happen, it is too late. The best case scenario is to palm (or any sleight, really) BEFORE the spectator is aware that the trick itself has started. Pit Hartling discusses this idea in "The Performing Mode".

    Do you perform seated or standing? If you are standing, a slight body twist can help.

    Last thought: TPC. My favorite card move, and a nice way to work to a palm as well.

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