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illusionist987
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Hello everyone. I'm currently in production with the company I started of an instructional video that will teach a lot of street magic style effects. It will include several props.

What my question is:

What would you want to see or learn in an instructional DVD? What tricks do you think should be included?

I would love to hear from anyone so I can get an idea of what it is that people want to learn. Any thoughts, ideas or suggestions are appreciated.

Thanks,

Bryan Doane
Owner/ Founder of New School Magic
New School Magic
"Where YOU are the master of reality!"
tnscot
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Smooth TT usage, basic palming, OOTW, basic card sleights, basic coin sleights, proper pull usage, cups and balls, book test. Basically, all the things that you are looked down upon until you know them. That would be a great beginnner video.
As Always,
Scot Legdermain
Dmann
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In the past IMHO Magicians devoured books and anything they could find in order to learn everything they could. You never know when you will need something that you just skimmed over. If you only study narrowly then you will be missing a lot of material. I say in a video you would need all the basics kind of like tnscot says.
THEGUY26 (Will Swanson)
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The Nelson Clip Shift.
The Amazing Noobini
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The problem with beginning, which I did less than a year ago, is that everything seems to require something else that you haven't leant yet. So you have to sidetrack in order to hunt down one technique you are missing. Then another, then another. You build a library but run the risk of giving up because you cannot do anything from A to Z even after months.

In that respect, the Ellusionist inhouse videos were clearly the best as they gave you everything you needed in order to do at least something right away. I don't think I do a single one of those Crash Course tricks now, but they were brilliantly taught compared to most everything else out there. Nothing you needed to know was missing.

People who critizise them for not teaching the best DLs and so on never got it. They can probably do more advanced stuff off camera. But the DVD isn't about the performer as much as it is about the student.

So my advice would be to go enough in depth of a few things to be certain to provide everything in order to learn it. No camera angles that don't show things properly. No rushed explanations of what you yourself may think of as obvious.

Recruit someone who know nothing as a consultant.

There is nothing wrong in including things that one needs to practice for quite a while. But there needs to be some items that one can do after five minutes. If not a beginner may come to the conclusion that it is "too difficult for someone like me".
"Talk about melodrama... and being born in the wrong part of the world." (Raf Robert)
"You, my friend, have a lot to learn." (S. Youell)
"Nonsensical Raving of a lunatic mind..." (Larry)
BrianMillerMagic
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Quote:
On 2007-07-19 20:12, The Amazing Noobini wrote:There is nothing wrong in including things that one needs to practice for quite a while. But there needs to be some items that one can do after five minutes. If not a beginner may come to the conclusion that it is "too difficult for someone like me".


I agreed with most everything you said except I disagree somewhat with this thought. Magic is such a unique art that requires absolutely all of one's dedication. If a beginner comes to the conclusion "this is too difficult for someone like me" then they probably do not have what it takes to be a magician. I'm sorry if that sounds harsh but those who can pursue magic to the point where they can perform it efficiently struggled through how difficult it was in the beginning, and the hard work pays off.
Andy the cardician
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Tarbell course . . . ?
Cards never lie
The Amazing Noobini
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[quote]On 2007-07-19 20:24, BrianMillerMagic wrote:
Quote:
If a beginner comes to the conclusion "this is too difficult for someone like me" then they probably do not have what it takes to be a magician.



Yes they (may) do. I would think that would be a typical case of low self esteem. Just the candidate for years of geeky time spent alone in their room practicing. Once the initial hurdle is overcome.

I'm sorry but I don't believe in these "few have what it takes" philosophies. Every artistic profession seems to have them. I read the intro page to a tutorial page for drawing comic book art. It went on about how it was such a hard struggle and how the reader should probably just turn away because hardly anybody had the right stuff no matter how good they drew. Nonsense.

What really IS a struggle is NOT finding something you enjoy doing in life. Having to be turned away by discouragement until anything seems impossible. People need to be invited in. Magic is nothing special. Anyone can learn it if they really want to. That's why there are so many extremely different magicians. Smile
"Talk about melodrama... and being born in the wrong part of the world." (Raf Robert)
"You, my friend, have a lot to learn." (S. Youell)
"Nonsensical Raving of a lunatic mind..." (Larry)
BrianMillerMagic
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I didn't say "few have what it takes," but if you're discouraged within the first five minutes then you may not have the proper dedication. That's all I meant.
pradell
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There are many books and videos that teach the same tricks...Really it's not about the tricks at all. It's about the teaching and the student/teacher relationship that one forms. Magic is the art of creating wonder. Can you, the instructor, inspire your potential student to understand this in your video, to stimulate them to want to continue to pursue the art, to explain not just the mechanics but the how and why so that they can connect with your approach to magic? To learn more about teaching, watch a Michael Ammar or a Jeff McBride video. Michael does not look like Lance Burton. But he is a great teacher. He has thought out his effects and clearly demonstrates them to make them easy to master for his audience. Jeff has tremendous energy, entusiasm and excitement about what he is doing. It is contageous. They are completely different in their personalities and teaching styles, yet both are highly effective teachers. Who are you? What are your assets, your gifts and talents not as a magician per se but as a teacher? How can you inspire? Tricks are just props, vehicles, examples. There are countless possibilities. In the end, what matters most is not the tricks you teach but how you present to your audience.

:magicrabbit:
Josh Riel
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Hey, I get to be the jerk. Sweet!

Sorry guys, unfortunately few have what it takes!

If you are not interested enough in magic to actually do Something, you do not have what it takes

Life is hard, in many cases it sucks, too bad! If you want to be a magician, learn to be a magician. If you want to be a guy who watches a video and "Impresses" his friends.... You are not a magician.

Ah, to be young again.
Magic is doing improbable things with odd items that, under normal circumstances, would be unnessecary and quite often undesirable.
ted french
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Illusionist987, Are you doing the instructional part or are you going with someone else.
P3
practice practice perform.
Banester
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Funny how the topics shift.

How much of a beginner course? Like how to take care of your cards or props. What is a coin palm? What is a double lift? Things like that? Or are you going to assume they have some skills and knowledge.
The art of a magician is to create wonder.
If we live with a sense of wonder, our lives
become filled with joy
-Doug Henning-
Josh Riel
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If you've ever tried to teach a complete beginner magic, even a simple thing like a TT, suddenly you realize all the little things you need to know that you take for granted. Mostly it is stuff you had to learn by trial and error.

Personally, I think a beginner should learn the basics of misdirection and showmanship. Get an understanding of situations that may arise. then they should be taught a slip force with a little routine. Send them into the world with the stuff that matters and something relatively easy to do.

I think the most discouraging thing to do to a beginner is teach him a bunch of tricks. Like giving someone a really nice car that doesn't have an engine. Of course no one wants to learn theory
Magic is doing improbable things with odd items that, under normal circumstances, would be unnessecary and quite often undesirable.
seraph127
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Quote:
On 2007-07-20 10:55, Josh Riel wrote:
If you've ever tried to teach a complete beginner magic, even a simple thing like a TT, suddenly you realize all the little things you need to know that you take for granted. Mostly it is stuff you had to learn by trial and error.

Personally, I think a beginner should learn the basics of misdirection and showmanship. Get an understanding of situations that may arise. then they should be taught a slip force with a little routine. Send them into the world with the stuff that matters and something relatively easy to do.

I think the most discouraging thing to do to a beginner is teach him a bunch of tricks. Like giving someone a really nice car that doesn't have an engine. Of course no one wants to learn theory


I love me some theory and believe that the study of it can be profitable (in almost any endeavour) but I think this is backwards.

Some poetry dilletante complained to a professional that he was making no progress on his poem. "I haven't had a single idea all day!" he groused. The professional replied "But you don't make a poem with ideas, you make it with words."

Put another way "theory follows practice."

Our performances are made of tricks. Don't we need to learn how to just do one or two, then learn to do them well?
There are many tricks, and many effects, but rarely a Grand Effect. There are many entertainers, but few real magicians. Many technicians, but few artists who use their art to explore their vision. - Derren Brown, Absolute Magic
Josh Riel
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I think that's exactly what we need. However most material teaches a lot of tricks with very little theory.

Once you can do the slip force(Just an example)as part of a routine. A routine that is entertaining and magical, you have really started to be a magician. Then you can learn to do all the tricks you want, and understand what is necessary in pulling them off.

Magic is easy, unless you want to do it right.... Then magic gets hard.
Anybody can play a guitar, anybody can buy it and pluck the strings.

Of course the original question was what tricks should be included. My answer: cards:slip force, key card. Coins, balls, small items:classic palm, finger palm, false transfer. Then teach them magic.
Magic is doing improbable things with odd items that, under normal circumstances, would be unnessecary and quite often undesirable.
JamesTong
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Offering techniques and a little bit of theories and principles is fine.

How about teaching them to string up what they have just learnt into a mini magic show they can perform to the audience, if they are to follow the DVD's teaching closely. At the end of the day, and with enough practise, they get to perform their first magic show. All this because of your instructional DVD.
tnscot
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Quote:
On 2007-07-20 01:25, Josh Riel wrote:
Hey, I get to be the jerk. Sweet!

Sorry guys, unfortunately few have what it takes!

If you are not interested enough in magic to actually do Something, you do not have what it takes

Life is hard, in many cases it sucks, too bad! If you want to be a magician, learn to be a magician. If you want to be a guy who watches a video and "Impresses" his friends.... You are not a magician.

Ah, to be young again.



I was a professional Chef for 14 years. I was classically trained at at Culinary Arts school, and I have forgotten more about food thatn most people will learn in their lives. I used to think that made me somebody. It took me a few years to understand that more people like to eat pizza and burgers more than Pate'Foix Gras and Beef Wellington. I came to understand that the guy who does a darn good job of serving meatloaf at Denny's is as valuable to a Denny's customer as I was to a private country club customer. If the customer who walked into their restaurant left happy, and wanted to return...then they did their job as well as I did, and deserved just as much respect.
This applies to the magic world: The guy who uses all packaged effects can put on just as impressive an act as the guy who does it all "the hard way", BY SPECTATOR STANDARDS. The only people who know the diference are the magicians. The guy who learned a few tricks to get him moving, and performs while he studies further is not going to impress any magic snobs, but he is more relevant as an entertainer than the guy who has been practicing his moves in his basement for 6 months without performing. Someone here (Bill Palmer, I think) turned me onto a gaffless scotch and soda. It's awesome. But I don't do it. I use my Johnson S/S. Guess how many spectators have failed to be impressed by it? NONE. It ALWAYS kills. A magician is a performer. If you are performing, and your audience is entertained, then you did your job well. If you are able to do it the hard way, that's great for you. You deserve repect for your perseverance. If you used gaffs, and tricks that were "easy" to learn, instead of spending months learning it the hard way, then who cares? You desrve respect for entertaining your audience. If the audience is entertained and fooled by what you did, the you did your job as a magician. There's nothing wrong with a beginner looking for a video that will jump start his magic. And there's nothing wrong with the person who had the forsight enough to create that video.
As Always,
Scot Legdermain
Josh Riel
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My reply was obviously harsher than I intended. The usual levity I add to such statements wasn't too clear. Although if a guy don't want to put any work into his magic, he's gonna have crummy magic.

If all one does is gaffed prepackaged entertaining magic, one would still be a magician. I think even such a person would admit that just because it's a simple trick with an easy gaff, to make it magical takes real practice, time and work too.

If you get frustrated because everything isn't spelled out for you in detail in the instruction manual and you give up because anything that hard isn't worth your time.... Well done magic isn't easy.

Of course this is just me, I may be wrong. But anyone who disagrees with me is a communist!
Magic is doing improbable things with odd items that, under normal circumstances, would be unnessecary and quite often undesirable.
Indigo52
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Having spent considerably more of my life as a spectator than a magician, I feel that presentation can make virtually any trick look good. Presentation installs the magic,IMHO,and most specs wouldn't know whether a trick was hard to the magician or not. More importantly, they wouldn't care. One of my favorite tricks is 8 card Brainwave--certainly not hard to do the moves, but it never fails to knock em dead. It could also be made boring, aggressively adversarial or just plain dumb, if improperly presented.

Maybe, for a beginner video, it might be good to learn a small set of relatively easy to perform tricks, then go back and demonstrate the difference between an entertaining presentation and a "bad" one. IE-give the mechanics and provide the instructions on installing the magic.

Ken
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