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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Nothing up my sleeve... » » I wonder sometimes... (3 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Mb217
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I've oftened wondered as to all the coin magic that has been created...🤔 When I was coming up, it mostly came from magic shops, or you could learn stuff from little clubs of magicians that you might not have been down with. Of course there were books, and I guess if you were lucky, you might even have happened upon a mentor along your way. I personally didn't have much of any of this along my journey, and what I wonder at times, with all the magic that is being created almost daily (just check "Latest & Greatest" forum) just how much good magic never got to the market place from the big, small & all of us because we had no vehicle or medium to better develop or to market our creations?

It seems that perhaps the biggest thing to happen to magic is not any great trick but the growth of technology. Without it, we don't have all these creators or even a clear view of what's being created, or even discussed. I know of most of the great coin magicians, but I just have to think that if I had never seen a Mickey Silver or a Ponta The Smith (if you didn't then you wouldn't know, but since you have then you know better than you would've in just taking the words of the Magic intelligentsia), then the more established performers would just continue be mostly all of what's considered to be good-better-best of things. I guess they still could be, but we know better now that there are a lot more people in the room that we can see and touch now, the half-known and the hardly known if at all. Only now, they come to the light under their own power and abilities most times...Hmmmmm.

What's funny is that you don't have to be the best, "good" will do. Smile Also, being separated in the world kinda makes you believe that where you are is "The" standard of excellence. We have clearly seen that not to be exactly the truth. And that truth can be seen by anyone that can navigate to YouTube. Smile I guess I just wonder as to all the magic out there. It does not preclude all the great magic we have seen and hold dear, but it just makes you wonder sometimes. Smile
*Check out my latest: Double Trouble, FlySki, Crimp Change - REDUX!, and other fine magic at www.VinnyMarini.com Smile

"Not much new under the sun I hear but under the moon, well who knows, that just might be a horse of a different color." -Mb Smile
jefkve
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Great post! I have to agree in that I've often wondered as well about all the tricks, methods, and styles out there....and been amazed watching performances by people that demonstrate skills I thought useless, but are clearly useful given the right presentation. You talk about books, and I wonder how many wonderful tricks are buried out there waiting for someone to rediscover them and show us what the author meant vs what he wrote....But as you say, so too I wonder...
Rick Holcombe
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Marion, you mention YouTube and it made me think of how a lot of magicians hate it. Truth is, there is a lot of exposure and a lot of bad performances out there. What's even worse is people starting out will use YouTube as a learning resource; it's a resource they've grown up with.

On the other side YouTube offers an opportunity to see some excellent magic. You can see Harry Lorayne's stuff he put up, Jay Sankey has a channel where he literally teaches some of his best stuff, and there are a ton more to see.

The hard thing is to teach that beginner in magic whats good and whats not. And I think there could be consensus on either side, not just subjective "good or bad".

So with so much access nowadays, it also increases the amount of mediocre material too. There is great magic too, but now there's a lot more material to wade through. It used to be that you knew what was good or bad since there was less out there. A lot of times the new stuff is coming from people with no reputation, like you mentioned, so it takes longer to get noticed.
fonda57
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I think its the same as its always been, just more to wade through. I've always loved books and that's mostly how I've learned magic.

I met a 13 year old recently who was doing card tricks at the library. He told me he learns from youtube and he cant learn from books. Woah.

Speaking of Sankey and youtube, some of his coin stuff is weird.
Signet
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YouTube has definitely made it easier to get people to see your art. That's what magic is performance art. Whether or not your art is pleasing to the audience is the question. It used to be in order to get discovered you had to be good as well as a little lucky. These days you can put your videos on YouTube and gain a following. I think if you're
Poof-Daddy
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Just as there was a time when folks only bought what they had the money for (rather than blowing up that credit card), there was a time that only people who had a general knowledge of magic as a hobby and/or profession that was enough to make them “seek it out”. I agree YouTube is “today’s shortcut” but I don’t think you get the more serious crowd like there was in the past. YouTube, to me, “cheapens it” a bit. Many learn fast but also learn poorly (from mediocre to lousy teachers) and it ends up a passing hobby (but the secrets are still out). Many YouTubers put it out to get hits but don’t pay attention to the consequences of giving secrets to the masses (most that were not theirs to give) just got hits and likes, not really adding quality magicians to the pool. Like the credit card. Spend it up, max it out, then think “Wow, how am I gonna pay this back and did I really need all that”? Another unintended consequence.
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JoeHohman
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Marion, I think your point is that, while there have been some great advances in coin magic in the past few years, the biggest change has not been in the magic but in the way that magic can be accessed. I agree -- the internet has changed everything, for good and for bad.

The thing I like about it is that a putz like me can see some pretty cool magic performed by big names (well.... big names to us), and we can also see some REALLY WELL DONE magic by people who will never rise above the "hobbyist" label -- people who will never be nationally known performers, but have invested the time and the thought to produce some mind-boggling routines.

The thing I don't like about it is that there is SO MUCH EXPOSURE. What is almost as bad is there are a lot of examples of performances that are utterly fantastic from a sleight-of-hand perspective, but are delivered with what I will call a lack of charisma. I am afraid that a lot of these folks are performing ONLY for their cameras, and have lost the ability to perform for actual people.

Is it ok if some magicians specialize in devising ground-breaking sleights and routines, yet aren't particularly skilled performers? Of course it is. But what worries me is that the young performers of today are learning these guys' performance styles (in fact, often they are COPYING that style, word for word and gesture for gesture).

I lean toward learning from books. But when I learn something from a book, I really try to spend some considerable time (weeks, months sometimes) in trying to figure out how this trick or that one will fit my personality, my storytelling style, my sense of humor. Now if I had my way, I would learn from a mentor -- I think having a mentor, or even a solid peer group, is the best way to learn magic. In my humble way (and believe me, it is really humble), I have tried to mentor other magicians. I would encourage each of you, when you encounter a starting-out magician, don't just teach them a few tricks or moves -- teach them some misdirection; teach them the proper respect for secrecy; teach them how to entertain their audience without pandering; and teach them how to keep it brief!

(I like my current cups and balls routine, but I am trying to learn some new bits. The other night I watched Ross Bertram's cups and balls routine on a DVD. God bless you, Ross, wherever you are, you fooled the daylights out of me -- but your routine went on WAY TOO LONG! I stopped watching after six minutes [no lie, six minutes of cups and balls!]. I think this is what I was talking about earlier -- Ross Bertram was a sleight of hand genius, but the public has never heard of him, and the reason they've never heard of him is that he was a less-than-engaging performer. I know, I know, I have just committed blasphemy....)
fonda57
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I've seen Big Names teach certain moves incorrectly, and this will be considered and advancement
harris
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I grew up on magic during the 70's and 80's. Between Ring 129 members and lecturer, And meeting magicians while living in Nevada, I feel I had a good foundation, mentors and teachers.

Time apart from the magic world also helped my coin magic.

Harris
Still too old to know it all
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
drlaugh4u@gmail.com
music, magic and marvelous toys
http://magician.org/member/drlaugh4u
gallagher
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Hey Marion,
nice thoughts here.
The word 'wonder....full' came to mind.

On the other hand,
we can't think 'bout the "fastballs we let go by".
True,..a sad thought.
(especially considering today's salarys!)

An ear to the ground,
an eye to the sky.
Forwards.

BUT(!),
question for YOU Marion.
"Marion Boykin. One of the most creative Coin Magicians today.
Self-admittedly 'sheltered a bit', from Magic,..
Where DID your creative 'kicks' come from?"

'Curious George'.
countrymaven
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While the internet seems to be a threat to magic, it is not really. But you must now be wise to survive and thrive as a magician. So if you do only normal tricks with little creativity, and experience, you may find your spectators telling you how you do it after a quick google search. So in a way, today is the greatest time for the wise and very experienced and creative magician. But it also is a bad time to be a rank amateur. So the bar has gone up quite a bit in maintaining a high level of magic and to be able to be called a real magic man, not just a trixter whose trix can be found with 3 minutes on google. So the real requisite for being a master magician today is wisdom, and not mere knowledge. There is too much of the latter, but the former is a rarity.

So I encourage everyone to acquire as much depth and experience as possible. Some of the greatest magic has been forgotten amid the thousands of other mediocre tricks. I just did an impromptu levitation, surrounded, that killed(yes no threads nothing extra only one object). But almost no magicians or spectators would be able to find any solution to this simple but very subtle masterpiece. It only took about 40 years of learning countless tricks, sifting through many thousands of effects, and doing magic to realize what a mind blower it is. Yes, it is unfortunate that the bar is set so high now, but we must deal with reality and not fantasy.
Mb217
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Quote:
On Oct 28, 2017, gallagher wrote:
Hey Marion,
nice thoughts here.
The word 'wonder....full' came to mind.

On the other hand,
we can't think 'bout the "fastballs we let go by".
True,..a sad thought.
(especially considering today's salarys!)

An ear to the ground,
an eye to the sky.
Forwards.

BUT(!),
question for YOU Marion.
"Marion Boykin. One of the most creative Coin Magicians today.
Self-admittedly 'sheltered a bit', from Magic,..
Where DID your creative 'kicks' come from?"

'Curious George'.


Always good to hear from you G, from way across the pond, my friend. Smile And glad so many found this an interesting topic, as it is really a wonder to me, but "wonder" in a good way mostly. Smile

As to my "creative kicks," well, I think they mostly came from along the journey and just good ol' better understanding & doing. I don't know, but the more your interest and play with it, the more you tend to keep it on your mind, and your mind bakes it into maybe a bit more than hat it was. Smile The little creations I have happened upon allowed for a variety of parts to show as to the magic. For instance, I also enjoyed writing up and producing the manuscripts, to me it's like looking in at the workings of a fine watch before you shut the face and just admire the its precision to keep time, or something like that. Smile

And yes, Joe...I do think the medium of the new technology has changed the game. So while there may be a bit of chaff in with the wheat, there is a lot more of both. You still have to be scrutinous in making your way through it, but there's a whole lot more to choose from, and a lot more providers that can provide magic everywhere as good if not better sometimes as the old guard. I think I like it better like this, because in the end, we still must discern what's what, good-better-best. So while YouTube may present a lot of mediocrity, it also just as strongly presents promise, and it often comes from a kid with tattoos all over his arms and his hat turned backwards, rather than a well groomed practitioner with a cane and top hat. So, I say discard nothing until you make your way through it all. I personally have found quite a bit of good stuff out there, and I have marveled at the abilities that have grown in this new soil. I don't necessarily think that it is better or worse, just different...something for us to change by, perhaps yet again toward a new progress along the journey. Smile I'm telling you, even if YT drives you nuts sometimes, then just check out on the "Latest & Greatest" forum here on The Café, there's an amazing flow of stuff from a really focused group of practitioners made up of the big, small, and all of us...Just the way God planned it. Smile

Good talk!
*Check out my latest: Double Trouble, FlySki, Crimp Change - REDUX!, and other fine magic at www.VinnyMarini.com Smile

"Not much new under the sun I hear but under the moon, well who knows, that just might be a horse of a different color." -Mb Smile
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