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silverhawkins
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What are your thoughts on this type of trick...self working I mean? Not wanting to be elitist amongst card tricks lol, but they somehow seem far less exciting and special than tricks involving sleights etc. I think it's the fact anyone can do them and they require no skill somehow demeans them...

what do you think? inferior tricks?
meyegr
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To make 'real' magic requires the presentation of the effect, not the props or procedures, unless you are just trying to impress other magicians.
Rennie
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I have seen many "self working" effects that would blow you away. Why would you want any that requires multiple sleights, just to say you are a card "manipulator"? I do many effects that rely on sublety, and no one has ever said "gee, that looked easy"
As the late great Ted Annemann always said "The effect is the important thing, how you achieve it is not" So true !!
Rennie
The effect is the important thing, how you achieve it is not.......
Larry Davidson
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I think you sound like someone who's no longer a beginner but far from advanced.
S2000magician
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Quote:
On 2006-09-16 19:09, silverhawkins wrote:
. . . anyone can do them and they require no skill . . . .

If you believe that anyone can perform "self-working" card effects, you're mistaken. If you believe that they require no skill, you're similarly mistaken.

If you've ever seen a skillful presentation of Daryl's Dream a Card, Any Card or Fogel's Triple Prediction - essentially the same effect, though in extremely different guises - you'll know that self-working effects can be amongst the most powerful. If you haven't, you should.
MagiClyde
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I think that part of the problem is that the perception is that a self-working trick is not really magic. Perhaps, in a way, that is "old school" thinking at work. It basically states that one is not really a magician until one has "suffered" for their craft or studied for years under a master to learn some new sleight.
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sparks
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If in the eyes of those you are performing for, you have “done the impossible,” then the effect is a well chosen one. Equally, if not more important, your presentation and (to borrow a term from music) inserted ornamentations, will in the end determine how your audience remembers you (or if they remember you at all).
Sparks

It's kind of fun to do the impossible - Walt Disney
silverhawkins
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Ok fair enough. I suppose the presentation is the key thing....
airship
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Magic IS the presentation. The mechanics are only a 'trick'. The more thought, polishing, and practice you put into the presentation, the more powerful the effect will be.

To me, 'self-working' is just one more tool in a magician's toolchest. It's the same as using a stack, or a force, or a ], or any other magical tool. It's what you MAKE with that tool that is the real magic.
'The central secret of conjuring is a manipulation of interest.' - Henry Hay
silverhawkins
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Point taken. Good analogy airship...
Roger Kelly
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It seems you've realised the 'error' of your initial post Silver. That's cool for a start. Only last week in my local, I was passed a battered, creased, dog-eared deck of cards and my mate, trying to be smart said, "Right, do something with those then..." Having had the benefit of a few scoops of the amber stuff, I did a twenty minute 'show' of ALL self-workers and the response was awesome.

"... they somehow seem far less exciting and special than tricks involving sleights..." - As has been offered by many on these Café pages, lay-specs would not know the difference between a self-worker and any other copped, side stolen, pass-ridden, top-changed effect if it smacked them in the face! In fact, a self-worker can often look more incredible because it is just that - self working. No finger-flicking or card cutting all over the place etc. Engrossing a spectator with a well-rehearsed presentation is what really gets them.

Also as a side answer to your initial post - consider all the books that are dedicated to the self-working miracle. There are loads! Steve Beam has five volumes and is working on the sixth. Check out the work of Peter Duffie too. And let's not forget the Dover books of course. "Gemini Twins" is still quite stunning when presented with a little panache!

Cheers and welcome to the Café by the way.

Roger
Ed_Millis
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I was just discussing this point with another magi. Two things I find dismaying is (a) beginners wanting to do the "coolest trick I ever saw" with no work, and (b) beginners being sent off to learn knuckle-busting sleights to become a "real" magician.

For the record, I do kid's birthday parties (although I'm trying to expand), and I have nothing that relies on sleights (well, for one trick I can't get caught turning the bottom card over). Recently, I put three of these card tricks together in a routine, with the last being a totally self-working trick the volunteer does in their own hands. When their card comes up the third time and I never touched the deck, it's a killer!

I think if more beginners were sent to get one or two presentation-heavy, non-sleight tricks, and worked on these in between giving their knuckles a break, they would be able to confidently present good magic sooner. They would also learn that the magic is in the magician and his presentation, not in the technique.

Ed
silverhawkins
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Thanks fellas. All this is so true. As Roger said, I realise the error of my initial post!!

See you's later!
MagiClyde
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I think that the reason most magicians steer clear of self-working tricks is either because they feel it's "beneath" a real magician or they feel it's a form of cheating that lessens their skills or worth as magicians. Sad, really!

Everyone else that's posted is right. It's not HOW a trick is done that the audience cares about, but its presentation and, consequently, its entertainment value to them. And that's the real bottom line.
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Chubby Harris
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"Gemini Twins" by Karl Fulves, a effect I still use to this day, and still get a great reaction too.
Not long after meeting my current partner, she introduced me to some friends of her's, who were shortly due to get married, I performed this effect for them, and spun a story about how compatable they both were, by both picking the ideal partner with the cards etc, they STILL talk about it to this day.
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SteveTheMagician
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If you ask me, self-working tricks are great! It all depends on the approch. Ammar had a great self-working card trick on one of his easy to master card miracle tapes, forgive me, but I forget both the trick name and which volume it was on. lol. (It involved all of one suit to be in order on the bottom of the deck, if you know the name please post). But instead of using a ton of piles and/or counting like most of them do, it was about done 95% in the spectators hands.

So again, there is nothing wrong with taking the easy road, to end with a quote: "Make the impossible look easy, and the easy look amazing"

-Steve
munkywrench
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A wise man once said tha we are actors playing the role of magicians. Real magic relies on the performers ability to make it real. Take the bite out quarter trick. Blaine did it pretty good, the Fonz made it very funny. Two different ideas on selfworking trick that I found pretty entertaining. Magicians sometimes get caught up in the complexity of a trick and that takes away from the magic. I have found that the simple magic is the most astonishing.
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BCaldwell
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It depends on if your doing magic for yourself, or for the audience. After spending countless hours perfecting a knuckle-buster only to get a lukewarm response, then getting HUGE reactions from a self-worker I figured out that how hard a trick is to learn isn't as important as your presentation. So yes, they are 'real tricks.' Smile
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the fritz
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SteveTheMagician,

The trick you're referring to is "The Lazy Man's Card Trick" and you are right, it is a killer. It can also be found in Harry Lorayne's "Close-Up Card Magic." I'm not super-fond of tricks with set-ups, but this one is worth it. The first time I ever performed it, it got reactions I never dreamed it would get. I guess I should've known though, because I was stunned when I saw it for the first time, performed by Michael Ammar. I originally thought Ammar was playing with the spectator when he had him turn the card over (I thought Ammar was setting the spectator up for a sucker trick). When he turned it over and it was his card my jaw dropped. It is one of the tricks I receive the most requests for, and I'm not even a professional performer!

SilverHawkins,

Check out Card College Light and you'll be further impressed that self-working tricks can fry with the best tricks out there.
DStachowiak
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Quote:
On 2006-09-17 03:39, clynim wrote:
I think that part of the problem is that the perception is that a self-working trick is not really magic. Perhaps, in a way, that is "old school" thinking at work. It basically states that one is not really a magician until one has "suffered" for their craft or studied for years under a master to learn some new sleight.


Who is it that has this so-called "perception" that a self-working trick is not really magic? Oh, yes I see, it's "old school" magicians. Who would those be exactly? Annemann? Harry Lorayne? Jean Hugard? Karl Fulves?
Take a look at YouTube and see who's busy trying to impress the world with "some new sleight". "Old school"? Hardly.

Quote:
On 2006-11-19 08:50, clynim wrote:
I think that the reason most magicians steer clear of self-working tricks is either because they feel it's "beneath" a real magician or they feel it's a form of cheating that lessens their skills or worth as magicians. Sad, really!

Everyone else that's posted is right. It's not HOW a trick is done that the audience cares about, but its presentation and, consequently, its entertainment value to them. And that's the real bottom line.

Do "most magicians steer clear of self working tricks"?
I think the posts in this thread would indicate the opposite is true.
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