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Steven Youell
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From "A Study In Scarlet":

Quote:
"You see," he explained, "I consider that a man's brain originally is like a little empty attic, and you have to stock it with such furniture as you choose. A fool takes in all the lumber of every sort that he comes across, so that the knowledge which might be useful to him gets crowded out, or at best is jumbled up with a lot of other things, so that he has a difficulty in laying his hands upon it. Now the skillful workman is very careful indeed as to what he takes into his brain-attic. He will have nothing but the tools which may help him in doing his work, but of these he has a large assortment, and all in the most perfect order. It is a mistake to think that that little room has elastic walls and can distend to any extent. Depend upon it there comes a time when for every addition of knowledge you forget something that you knew before. It is of the highest importance, therefore, not to have useless facts elbowing out the useful ones."


Now, why don't we think that way about sleights? I don't think most magicians do.

It's my opinion that most magicians learn a jumble of sleights because they don't plan out what to learn beforehand, so they end up with a jumble of sleights that they learned simply because those sleights struck their fancy at the time.

I believe that if you focused on learning and mastering the following sleights (or categories of sleights), in terms of Devant's definition of "mastery", then you would be able to do 95% of the card material in print:

1) Obtaining, maintaining and manipulating a break.
2) Side Steal
3) A Pass
4) False Overhand Shuffle technique.
5) False Riffle Shuffle
6) The Classic Force
7) Multiple Lift Technique
8) A Multiple Shift
9) The glide
10) A selection of False Counts
11) The Top Change
12) Top Palm for single and multiple cards
13) Bottom Palm for single and multiple cards
14) Six to Twelve Peeks
15) A dozen different locations/and or Controls
16) A dozen visual Card Revelations
17) Culling Techniques
18) Three Sure-Fire Forces
19) Second and Bottom Deal
20) A few good Color Changes
21) An In The Hands Faro

Now I may have missed one or two because I don't have my article in front of me, however you should get the idea. In terms of Mastery the way Devant defines it, these should take *years* to master. But the payoff is that you would have a foundation that probably could not be beat by the vast majority of magicians and you could do almost all of the material in print.

Building a solid foundation by using a plan. I cannot see a downside to that.

They may not be the only sleights you'll want to learn, but they'll probably be the only sleights you'd NEED in order to be a top flight cardman.

What would happen to Magic if we insisted that the younger crowd took this approach?

Steven Youell
daviaac
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I think that the bottom dealing could be left for more of an afterthought i'de consider myself a good card guy but I'm only just starting bottom dealing. it's a gambling sleight that takes years to master which in case of a newbie they just want instant sleights.

luke
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Steven Youell
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Quote:
On 2009-01-17 05:31, daviaac wrote: it's a gambling sleight that takes years to master which in case of a newbie they just want instant sleights.


Hello Luke!

There's no such thing as "instant sleights", in my opinion.
And I was using Devant's definition of mastery, which means most sleights take years to master-- so the bottom deal could come last...

SEY
michaelvincent
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Steve,

You have approached a subject I have lectured on called The Poetry of Conjuring.

My thinking is that there are some fundamental sleights which I feel are essential for building a solid foundation.

They are:

1-General Card Handling: shuffling,cutting etc
2- The Control of a Card
3-The Double Lift
4-The Top Change
5-The Palm
6-The Glide
7-The False Shuffle

My lecture covers an in-depth analysis on these sleights with applications.

This model comes from one of my favorite books, The Royal Road to Card Magic.
I am pleased to see that I am not the only one who thinks this way.

Good observation

Mike Vincent
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vinsmagic
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One tool that is very important that was not mentioned is the art of Misdirection.
Come check out my magic.

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NicholasD
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For many magicians, the bottom deal falls into the same category as palming. That is, they're afraid of it. Some bottom deals ( Murray Bonfeld's ) can be learned in five minutes.
michaelvincent
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Quote:
On 2009-01-17 10:21, vinsmagic wrote:
One tool that is very important that was not mentioned is the art of Misdirection.

My apologies Vinnie, you beat me to it.

The execution of the fundamentals must be accompanied by effective audience management and attention control.

Well said my friend.

Mike Vincent
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Steven Youell
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Quote:
On 2009-01-17 11:12, NicholasD wrote:
For many magicians, the bottom deal falls into the same category as palming. That is, they're afraid of it. Some bottom deals (Murray Bonfeld's) can be learned in five minutes.

There is a huge difference in learning a sleight and mastering it.

SEY
Lawrence O
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What you are proposed is a strong foundation on card sleight of hand.
I think that to make it less scholastic, for cards, you should buy P Paul Wilson's Royal Road To Card Magic DVD. You'll learn a lot of the sleights mentioned above but you'll do it faster than learning from books and you'll learn from a genius. Then buy the e-book of the Encyclopedia of Card Trick by Jean Hugard and Daryl Encyclopedia of Card Sleights DVD series: try to find in Daryl ways to do what you have already learned in a different way. Your last step will be Michael Ammar's Easy To Master Card Miracles DVD series, where you will find the tricks with the most impact and not just the "pick a card: here it is" type (which has some merit).

My advice takes technique into consideration but it also cares about you not getting discouraged and keeping on having fun along the learning process.

Now for coins buy Ben Salinas Bobo's Coin Magic DVD, Expert Coin Magic by David Roth DVDs, and Michael Rubinstein's Encyclopedia of Coin Sleights

For Cups and Balls Michael Ammar's DVDs can not be surpassed

To learn Technique, DVDs will get you there in a shorter time (and a less frightening approach) than books and you will have more fun searching the books after that.


This is the advice from a book fanatic.
Magic is the art of proving impossible things in parallel dimensions that can't be reached
Harry Lorayne
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Hey, you might even want to try some HL books!! I know some above will disagree, but I've said it, written it, many times. You can do miracles with only three things - a good control (that includes a good force), a good double lift, a good palm. Get those three down pat, then you can go to the others. Just my opinion, folks. HL.


Okay; even some HL DVDs!
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Uli Weigel
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I'd like to suggest adding one more important category of sleights to the list: Packet Switches (ATFUS, Throw Switch, Braue Add-On, Versa Switch, Jinx Switch to name a few). There are so many routines which require a packet switch, that I feel, a list with fundamental techniques would be incomplete without.
Chris SD
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People should learn and do moves/material that they like, not try to follow some pre-set "plan for success". Letting people find their own way with a little bit of guidance is a better plan in my opinion. I have a feeling that most of us will end up in the same neighborhood anyway.

Quote:
On 2009-01-17 04:28, Steven Youell wrote:
What would happen to Magic if we insisted that the younger crowd took this approach?



I think you'd have a lot less kids in magic; which may or may not be a good thing. The thing is that some of them will gravitate towards the "good stuff", and the interest of the others will probably wane with time.
I happen to agree that the focus has largely become on useless crap that's difficult for difficults sake (hello anti-faro, nice to meet you), but if that's what they want to do, let them do it.
fmpilot
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Quote:
It's my opinion that most magicians learn a jumble of sleights because they don't plan out what to learn beforehand, so they end up with a jumble of sleights that they learned simply because those sleights struck their fancy at the time.


Steven Youell

Guilty! I am working on reforming, however. The likes of Youell, Lorayne, and a few other Café members are my counselors.

Thanks, guys!
Fran
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Shodan
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I tend to agree with the original post. I think that because of the ease with which we can now present our material to other magicians (hello youtube!) the magician's desire to fool and/or impress other magicians has risen to new heights - not least because magicians are the only ones who can be guaranteed to give a monkey's about your new colour change, double deck flip with extra hot sauce, or whatever. A solid foundation is certainly the key to future success.

However, I do think that its not that big of a problem. Publications like the Royal Road, Card College, The Complete Course etc. are all out there for the taking and any new magician who's really interested in becoming good usually has the sense to ask on a forum what they should be looking for, and almost without exception they get directed towards the good stuff. Whether they choose to take this advice or get seduced by the latest "one trick wonder" DVD is largely up to them.

Cheers,
David.
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Lawrence O
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Quote:
On 2009-01-17 12:57, Harry Lorayne wrote:
Hey, you might even want to try some HL books!! I know some above will disagree, but I've said it, written it, many times. You can do miracles with only three things - a good control (that includes a good force), a good double lift, a good palm. Get those three down pat, THEN you can go to the others. Just my opinion, folks. HL.


Harry,

It doesn't matter if some sad spirits disagree, you supplied much more than your share of miracles and once the original author of the thread gets his "foundation" in place, he should invariably arrive to the fantastic production of card tricks you did, whether in your own name (too many books to quote after Close Up card magic, Reputation makers etc..., each one being a gem) or shared by friends of yours under your pen (Apocalypse or Best of Friends)... and this is without quoting your DVDs

He however asked for foundation and you produced masterpieces.
Magic is the art of proving impossible things in parallel dimensions that can't be reached
vinsmagic
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I agree with what has been said so far However if you want to learn Artistry of Showmanship,Audience manigment, Technique and Deception look no further than Michael Vincent he is amaster at this.
Now Michael lives in London and we who are fortunate to see him at the magic Castle it is areal treat.
but, the second best is to observe Michaels talents on VHS or DVD
thje godfather
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Steven Youell
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Quote:
On 2009-01-17 12:24, Lawrence O wrote:
What you are proposed is a strong foundation on card sleight of hand.

You are correct. If I didn't specify that, then I should have.


Quote:
On 2009-01-17 13:00, Uli Weigel wrote:
I'd like to suggest adding one more important category of sleights to the list: Packet Switches (ATFUS, Throw Switch, Braue Add-On, Versa Switch, Jinx Switch to name a few). There are so many routines which require a packet switch, that I feel, a list with fundamental techniques would be incomplete without.

"Handling a Small Packet" should include things like that. I might have painted that category with too small of a brush...

SEY
Maestro
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Thanks for posting this Mr. Youell, really good article.

I think I'm in the "filling in" phase where I am proficient at most of the simpler sleights, but have been working for years on a lot of the tougher ones.

One quick question, would you recommend a specific bottom deal that might be good to learn? Out of all of the sleights on the list I think that one has been the most elusive to me... I can do a pretty good push off second, but I have yet to find a bottom deal that seems comfortable for me. I've also seen a lot of bad ones taught in DVD's especially for some reason. For example, I don't think a bottom deal from straddle grip looks very natural... in fact if one ever uses straddle grip in a gambling demonstration Smile I think it would be fully acceptable for a spectator to whip out a pistol and shoot you Smile .

Anyway, any recommendation would be appreciated, thanks.
Steven Youell
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Quote:
On 2009-01-17 18:21, Maestro wrote:
Thanks for posting this Mr. Youell, really good article.

I think I'm in the "filling in" phase where I am proficient at most of the simpler sleights, but have been working for years on a lot of the tougher ones.

One quick question, would you recommend a specific bottom deal that might be good to learn?

If you're a member of my site, please ask there. If not, please PM me and I'll answer your question after I get some answers from you.

BTW-- we have an Erdnase forum on the site that is run by someone I consider to be an expert in the field of False Deals.

SEY
MickeyPainless
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Maestro,

I'm sure you and I aren't the only ones having trouble with Bottoms! It seems to me that there are few sleights out there that given decent instruction I can at least pull off a halfassed version (in time). However, not so with the bottom deal (yet)! Someday amigo, someday (maybe)!

MickeyBottomless
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