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Topic: The soul of the cups
Message: Posted by: pabloinus (Oct 31, 2008 05:58PM)
A while ago there was a discussion about spinning cups and CNC cups, being the last ones without "soul" because of the CNC tools used for them.
Look to what I found

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=quugnBW2Hq8&feature=related

We have lost the soul of the cups for ever, from now on Jake, Riser and others will become R2D2s

.....
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Oct 31, 2008 06:25PM)
You would be surprised what cups are spun by a computerized lathe. Harries Bosco cups are just one example.
Message: Posted by: walid ahumada (Oct 31, 2008 06:58PM)
The new generations will learn to identify the soul of the things from its software
Message: Posted by: Epiphany (Oct 31, 2008 10:24PM)
[quote]
On 2008-10-31 19:58, walid ahumada wrote:
The new generations will learn to identify the soul of the things from its software
[/quote]

Even software needed a soul to write it.
Message: Posted by: gaddy (Nov 1, 2008 06:06AM)
Just remember that [i]you are the magic [/i] --and not the props. I'm sure you'll be able to find the "cup's soul" with that in mind..
Message: Posted by: cupsandballsmagic (Nov 1, 2008 06:20AM)
Good point gaddy :)

This is a subject that comes up in the guitar world a lot... People buy exactly the same guitar, pedals and amps, even get their guitar set up the same way, with the same strings and tuning as Stevie Ray Vaughan and think that it will allow them to emulate his tone and soul...

The thing is, it was all in his soul, his fingers and was a part of him.

I don't know about the difference between CNC cups because I don't own a set but I do know that a good magician can put his or her soul into a plastic $1 set and amaze and entertain an audience.
Message: Posted by: JamesTong (Nov 1, 2008 07:02AM)
I believe the rub-a-dub-dub routine speaks for itself.
Message: Posted by: pabloinus (Nov 1, 2008 08:05AM)
Before we go too far with the soul thing, and giving me lessons on artistry and performace...
My post tried to be an irony.I am not implying whatsoever about soul in inannimated items or the role of the magician.

A while ago there was another post comparing Johnson cups made through a CNC process and RNT2 made through a manual spin process, and the general comment was that manual spin process gives a different something to a piece like any artisan gives to his/her art, while a CNC tool driven by a software does not.

The video shows a Spin process controlled by a CNC machine...

That's all, just take the post as it is a humorous comment.
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 1, 2008 08:30AM)
[quote]
On 2008-11-01 07:20, mindyourmagic wrote:
Good point gaddy :)

This is a subject that comes up in the guitar world a lot... People buy exactly the same guitar, pedals and amps, even get their guitar set up the same way, with the same strings and tuning as Stevie Ray Vaughan and think that it will allow them to emulate his tone and soul...

The thing is, it was all in his soul, his fingers and was a part of him.

I don't know about the difference between CNC cups because I don't own a set but I do know that a good magician can put his or her soul into a plastic $1 set and amaze and entertain an audience.
[/quote]

There was a fellow who purchased Gazzo's vest, cups, wand and pouch who thought this would make it possible for him to "be" Gazzo. It didn't work.
Message: Posted by: cupsandballsmagic (Nov 1, 2008 09:10AM)
James, I just looked up the rub a dub dub... Wonderful! Yes, that does illustrate it perfectly!

pab, I don't think we are taking it too seriously, just discussing things asthey come up and the video was fascinating.

Bill, it seems like it happens in all walks of life. Shame because our individuality can make the difference.
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 1, 2008 10:39AM)
That's exactly true. There are literally hundreds of examples of this. As mentioned above, it happens with guitars. It also happens with banjos, harmonicas, baseball gloves, bats, hats, jerseys, jackets, rifles, pistols, knives, and yo-yos.

You can't buy talent. You can't buy skill. And you can't buy being artistic.

BTW, some people call magic the art that conceals art.

Think about this.

Pabloinus -- I spotted the irony in this instantly. BTW, did anyone ever notice that one cup maker knocked Busby for making CNC cups that were not as nice as the Johnson cups, because they didn't have the internal work of a spun cup, but he never said a thing about Van Dokkum's cups, which have the same kind of inside-outside situation.

One difference, though. Van Dokkum actually makes his cups. They don't get sent out to "Acme cup carving service."
Message: Posted by: Magic Researcher (Nov 1, 2008 01:49PM)
[quote]
On 2008-11-01 11:39, Bill Palmer wrote:
...BTW, did anyone ever notice that one cup maker knocked Busby for making CNC cups that were not as nice as the Johnson cups, because they didn't have the internal work of a spun cup, but he never said a thing about Van Dokkum's cups, which have the same kind of inside-outside situation...
[/quote]

Anyone paying attention to such things will remember that this cup maker wrote the comment BEFORE Auke was making his cups. It would be difficult to have commented on items before they were ever made.

How come Bill Palmer did not mention Porper's cups in this comment?

BTW - worse things than cup design could be said of Auke. Did anyone ever wonder why other manufacturers put away their wares when Auke came looking at conventions? Hmmmm, you can not buy "soul" not can you steal it.
MR
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 1, 2008 02:52PM)
I think you have misinterpreted my statement. I am not knocking Auke's workmanship at all. Nor am I knocking his cups. I consider Auke's products to be among the finest in the business, when it comes to CNC work. In fact, I was the person who NAMED two of the sets he makes. I have sets of his cups that nobody else has. I think you are ignoring the last sentence in my post.

If you really want to be fair to the fellow who posted the caustic comments about the Busby cups, remember that Joe Porper had not done anything to p*** the guy off. I don't think the fellow with the web page in question deserves any more "fairness" than he gave.

But, he had plenty of time to modify that page when the Sherwood cups came out, which was approximately the same time that the Van Dokkum cups were first issued. The person who posted those comments was modifying that page until December of 2006.

Check the original web site. You can find it if you know where to look. Since you are a "Magic Researcher," :lol: :lol: :lol: you should know how to do that.
Message: Posted by: TheAmbitiousCard (Nov 1, 2008 03:16PM)
[quote]
On 2008-11-01 09:30, Bill Palmer wrote:
[quote]
On 2008-11-01 07:20, mindyourmagic wrote:
Good point gaddy :)

This is a subject that comes up in the guitar world a lot... People buy exactly the same guitar, pedals and amps, even get their guitar set up the same way, with the same strings and tuning as Stevie Ray Vaughan and think that it will allow them to emulate his tone and soul...

The thing is, it was all in his soul, his fingers and was a part of him.

I don't know about the difference between CNC cups because I don't own a set but I do know that a good magician can put his or her soul into a plastic $1 set and amaze and entertain an audience.
[/quote]

There was a fellow who purchased Gazzo's vest, cups, wand and pouch who thought this would make it possible for him to "be" Gazzo. It didn't work.
[/quote]
I think there was a lot more than just one.
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 1, 2008 03:21PM)
I'm sure there have been many more than one.

The set of cups and the pouch I have are the ones he used in his book.

BTW, for one of my posts about the quality of Van Dokkum vs. Busby cups, check this out.

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/search_post.php?topic=125119&forum=134&post=4632864
Message: Posted by: Robert Kohler (Nov 1, 2008 03:21PM)
BTW - the original post showing the Youtube spinning was NOT showing a CNC process. It shows computer guided spinning. I assume the 'soul' comments were referring to spinning and shaping by hand vs. computer. CNC machining refers to a 3D program which cuts away a solid block of metal to the exact shape that is drawn in the CAD program. Many believe that the carving away of material via a programmed machine has less 'soul' than spinning and shaping by hand.........
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 1, 2008 03:34PM)
Robert:

CNC refers ONLY to the control part of the system. It does not refer to the technique. Gibson, Hopkins and a large number of other companies cut their inlays and their fingerboards using a CNC table. Granted, they use a CAD program to tell the machine where to go. So does the computerized spinning system.

Robot welding is a CNC process.
Message: Posted by: Mobius303 (Nov 1, 2008 03:35PM)
Artistic interpretation where Art by hand becomes art and CNC cups are just cookie cutter representations of art which has less a part of the Blood sweat and tears of the artist contained in the process. At least for the most part.
A peice made by hand feels different and is difficult to explain in words.

Cool video.
Mike
Message: Posted by: Jimeh (Nov 1, 2008 04:47PM)
Not being a C&B guy I'm curious, could you honestly tell the difference between a cup made by hand and a cnc made cup?? I'm sure in some cases you can obviously but in the case of a cup that is of superb quality could you still tell?
(without being told who or what made it of course)

James
Message: Posted by: gaddy (Nov 1, 2008 05:05PM)
[quote]
On 2008-11-01 09:30, Bill Palmer wrote:


There was a fellow who purchased Gazzo's vest, cups, wand and pouch who thought this would make it possible for him to "be" Gazzo. It didn't work.
[/quote]

Would he be willing to sell 'em? :D
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 1, 2008 06:12PM)
He was, and that's how I got them.

To tell the truth, I have never wanted to be Gazzo, any more than he has wanted to be me. There is only one Gazzo. I'm glad I can count him among my friends.

He is one of the best.
Message: Posted by: gaddy (Nov 1, 2008 08:54PM)
[quote]
On 2008-11-01 19:12, Bill Palmer wrote:
He was, and that's how I got them.

To tell the truth, I have never wanted to be Gazzo, any more than he has wanted to be me. There is only one Gazzo. I'm glad I can count him among my friends.

He is one of the best.
[/quote]

I just want one of his bags, man! :)

I have to admit, I've learned more from his video on the C&B's than from any other source so, obviously, if you were to see me do the trick on the streets you'd definitely see some similarities between us. But I put enough of myself into the routine so that I'm happy with it.

I only ever met the guy once at a lecture. He totally blew me away. And he inspired me to get out there and perform.

But that's a topic for another thread...
Message: Posted by: Josh the Superfluous (Nov 1, 2008 09:00PM)
I think some of the "soul" is [b]believing[/b] that a craftsman made it. I am not an expert, and I probably couldn't tell the manufacturing methods apart. But I've always had a place in my heart for my Riser, Hill, and Mogar props. I love my JP cups, but don't have the same pride in them, due to their anonymous source. The same goes for the props I've purchased at Target. It is true that the magic is in the performer, but knowing that the prop was made with care by a master does instill something in it for me. I'm sure if a true craftsman were operating the automated machinery, the calibration and quality would be better.

I used to go to one photo lab to have my pictures processed. It was the same automated setup as the other stores in the chain, but the guy who ran it was a perfectionist. Although it was located in a supermarket, all of the pros in-the-know went to him. (and charged their clients high end processing fees)
Message: Posted by: dcjames (Nov 1, 2008 09:24PM)
I own El Duco, JP, and RNT2 cups and enjoy all of them. I also bought some copper cups made in India at TJMaxx for $3 each. They were actually sold to be used as pencil holders but I really like them a lot too...

The origin of our props is not the source of our magic.
Message: Posted by: Josh the Superfluous (Nov 1, 2008 09:43PM)
[quote]
On 2008-11-01 22:24, dcjames wrote:
The origin of our props is not the source of our magic.
[/quote]

Unless you make your own props. :)
Message: Posted by: dcjames (Nov 1, 2008 09:59PM)
[quote]
Josh the Superfluous wrote:

Unless you make your own props. :)
[/quote]

True enough! :)
Message: Posted by: mrswilson (Nov 13, 2008 03:46AM)
Hi!

What is rub-a-dub-dub? I LOVE the word. But what's behind? Google only found a lyric?! Is it used for cups and balls? Three men, three balls? It sounds so funny! Whatever it is, my kids will love it! I think about using it as a magic word...

...Nicole (Magic Ma)
Message: Posted by: JamesTong (Nov 13, 2008 05:37AM)
Nicole, rub-a-dub-dub is a cups and balls routine performed by Bill Malone.

You can take a look at his video clip from You Tube
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CkFJ6z0ouiQ[/url]
Message: Posted by: mrswilson (Nov 13, 2008 05:57AM)
This is soooooooooo funny! I love it even more now that I know what it is! ;)
I will try to translate that into German. Unfortunately I think German doesn't sound that "round" and "easy going". But, I'll try. Whenever I have done it, I'll make a video myself and put it on youtube :)
Why haven't I heard of that earlier?! Thank you so much :)

...Nicole
Message: Posted by: JamesTong (Nov 13, 2008 06:02AM)
I'm glad you like Bill Malone's routine and I'll be waiting for your video too, Nicole.
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 13, 2008 10:50AM)
I tried translating it into German, but it came out sounding like a cabaret act at one of "Those" clubs in Berlin.
Message: Posted by: kentfgunn (Nov 13, 2008 12:50PM)
I think I found the original poster who spoke of the soul of the cups. I hear he's a real jerk.

[quote]
On 2008-07-20 10:44, kentfgunn wrote:
One set was turned by a machine. CNC tools cut a slab of brass into the Johnson product cup. You get one slab-o-brass-o-matic cup that way. No soul, no imparting of individuality by the spinner. No soul.

The cups from RNT II are hand spun by human beings. (Unless Jake is spinning that day, but he's close to being human, darn it!!) This continues a tradition of hand-made cups. If you want your magical tools to continue a tradition get Jake's cups. If you want to save a couple of bucks and get cookie-cutter cups, get the Johnson's.

As for which set will make for a better cups and balls routine, for you: It just doesn't matter. The magic isn't in the cups. Hopefully the magic is in you.

If you're attached to some diameter of final load, get a cup big enough to hold that load.

I only answered because you asked for responses from the veterans. I was in the military.
[/quote]

I have a set of RNT2 Cups and the Johnson cups.

I prefer spun cups. I was unecessarily waxing enthusiastic when I posted the above silliness. I've had the good fortune to speak to the Jakester on more than one occasion. I was mostly expressing a preference for, someone I consider a friend.

The one set of cups I own, that I use the most are also spun. They were the first set of cups I spent more than a hundred bucks on. They're the cups I've tossed in the air, banged with a wand and crammed little and big spheres into, thousands of times. To me they have a bit of me in them. I realize that's a snippet of poetic nonsense.

The real magic isn't in the props, nor is it in the magician. The real magic is when: with your props, aided by your abilities as a PERFORMER, you give your audience the experience of magic. The magic only happens in their eyes, truly only in their minds. It happens all too rarely with me as the performer, I hope you guys have better luck!!!

I still like my Sherwoods bestest!
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 13, 2008 01:05PM)
Kent:

This is one of the most insightful posts I have seen in a long time.

Many years ago, when I was first trying to be a pro, a fellow named Dick Oslund lectured at our magic club. He started his lecture with a question:

"How much magic do you own?"

One fellow said, "I own a shoebox full of magic."

Another said that he had a whole warehouse full of it. Some put a dollar value on it. When he finished taking answers, he said: "All of you are wrong. You don't own ANY magic. You own props, books, costumes, tricks and you might know some techniques, but you don't own any magic."

"Magic exists only in the spectators' minds. It's the feeling that you provoke in their minds with those props, books, costumes, etc. It's intangible. And it exists only at the time of the performance and when they are recalling it."

You have hit upon the point he was making.

Well said.

BTW, he had a second question he asked: "If you were putting on a show somewhere, you already had the hall booked and paid for, and you had $1800 to spend on the show, how would you spend it?"

Let's have some guesses, then I'll tell the forum how he replied.
Message: Posted by: kentfgunn (Nov 13, 2008 01:50PM)
Bill,

I'd spend the money on voice lessons.
Message: Posted by: Robert Kohler (Nov 13, 2008 02:42PM)
I'd spend it on magic lessons......
Message: Posted by: Richard Evans (Nov 13, 2008 03:07PM)
I'd spend it on advertising & press
Message: Posted by: gaddy (Nov 13, 2008 03:07PM)
I'd pocket the money and do the show I've already got. Maybe I'd buy some new clothes to upgrade the garb I've already got...
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 13, 2008 03:18PM)
[quote]
On 2008-11-13 16:07, Richard Evans wrote:
I'd spend it on advertising & press
[/quote]

BINGO! Give the man a cigar!

That's the answer. Some of the fellows started discussing purchasing this illusion or that one.

Dick's response: "If you don't already have an act, then why are you booking a show? Buy advertising."
Message: Posted by: Richard Evans (Nov 13, 2008 06:31PM)
[quote]
On 2008-11-13 16:18, Bill Palmer wrote:

BINGO! Give the man a cigar!

[/quote]

Can I smoke it in here, or do I have to go outside?

:smoke:
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 13, 2008 07:35PM)
Smoke it here. Steve won't mind.
Message: Posted by: Richard Evans (Nov 14, 2008 01:09PM)
I got a light from Kent :)
Message: Posted by: Lawrence O (Nov 14, 2008 03:53PM)
One question: when using bright colour balls, I sometimes have a reflection which could betray the concealed presence of a ball in a cup or under it.
How do you guys avoid this (I found a solution that I'm using but I'd like to know if someone has a smarter one)
Message: Posted by: Mobius303 (Nov 14, 2008 04:10PM)
I use a flat black interior to my cups used in performance.
I really never had that problem in the past because of the cups I used.
My Brass/Church Bronze R-n-T cups are unfinished inside so they do not reflect light much, same with my original R-n-T chrome cups.
My johnson Cups have a satin interior as do my Silver anniversary cups.
My Riser cups do not have a very reflective surface inside either ...satin is the best way to describe it and of course the CNC Steel Cups Sisti made had a satin finish all around inside and out.
My copper Sherwoods are designed so that when the ball is inside they do not reflect all the way to the top, the light seems to catch inside and you cannot tell the color of the ball inside.

I guess I chose the right cups to keep eh?
Mobius
Message: Posted by: Lawrence O (Nov 17, 2008 12:17AM)
You sure did choose your cups wisely.
My solution sofar is to paint the inside with metallic painf for figurines. It doesn't reflect light but if makes more sense to me than dull black in a cup,
Actually painting corkwood balls that way opens nice ways to Conus, Paul Gertner Stephen Tucker types of routines with metallic balls. It is possible to mix one metallic ball (for the sound but painted the same way) with the three corkwood ones
Message: Posted by: Open Traveller (Nov 17, 2008 12:32AM)
[quote]
On 2008-11-14 16:53, Lawrence O wrote:
One question: when using bright colour balls, I sometimes have a reflection which could betray the concealed presence of a ball in a cup or under it.
How do you guys avoid this (I found a solution that I'm using but I'd like to know if someone has a smarter one)
[/quote]

It could be that if they're scrutinizing the dirty cup during the load or after, there's something else wrong besides the cup itself.
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Nov 17, 2008 01:06AM)
My favorite cups have finishes that do not reflect what I might be holding in my hand. It's the simplest solution. The one with the metallic but not too reflective paint is a good idea. P&L used to paint many of their cups with a metallic grey paint on the inside.
Message: Posted by: kentfgunn (Nov 17, 2008 10:03AM)
While we're on the subject of reflection:

Al Schneider wrote about having been busted by a spectator because they saw a reflection of the ball, in his hand, off the shiny exterior surface of the cup.

Al's solution was to not use reflective cups. He let them patinate and never looked back.

I use really shiny cups on the interior. I think the construction of my routine precludes internal reflection problems. I will keep an eye out for it in reviewing video though!

KG
Message: Posted by: Mobius303 (Nov 17, 2008 02:43PM)
Kent you use Sherwoods then the design helps quite a bit as does the work on the outside as far as refelctions.
Check out the Mendoza Routine on youtube.
I had a friend that spray painted his interior of his cups and yes anything like that will help. I like the look of a nicely done Satin inerior to my cups. I will try to put up a few new pics to show this.

I fully understand the problem and it is probably not Etienne's problem but one of the design of the cups and the reflective surface inside. Not so many makers think of the design besides loads and exterior funtion....Brett thought about both when he made his design.

The P&L cups are great and I wonder if you could find a Powder coating that may match it and be quite durable as most powder coats now are even scratch resistant.
Mobius
Message: Posted by: kentfgunn (Nov 17, 2008 03:21PM)
Mike,

I actually like the shiny interior of the Sherwoods. I like to stress that the cups are empty, when I start out. I intentionally cover the entire mouth with my hand as I put the balls in the cups. I don't think my routine has any points where the shiny nature of the interiors would belie any of the machinations going on.

The engraving definitely kills any reflections coming off the exteriors. I love those darned cups!
Message: Posted by: Lawrence O (Nov 18, 2008 01:04PM)
I agree with Kent. I think that the Sherwood cups are the nicest cups on the market (for magic) and they do kill the outer reflection.

Everything is a trade off: Kent keeps his hand flat over the mouth of the cup as he fairly reports. This gesture is eye catching (it's the trade off for the shiny part of the inside of the cups). Having something eye catching can be used by the performer for misdirection purposes. He must however be conscious that he needs to be doing something about his trade off: IMHO it has to be managed.

I chose a different trade off from Kent: I accepted a less esthetical inside to avoid a less eye catching gesture which, IN MY ROUTINE, would put spectators off track. I think that Kent should find some form of justification for such an eye catching move (maybe just in his patter).

We can reduce the "cost" of the trade off but there is no way to avoid the trade offs, and this cost is in different "currency" because each routine has its own "currency" and its own finance minister: thus no solution is universal. However our task as magician is to manage the trade off we choose, not in a narssistic way but with the audience in mind.