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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Right or Wrong? » » Is exposure wrong? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Dannydoyle
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So you want to parse words? Really? Is that the point? Wow. I have felt that this is the last resort of a weak position. Heck I have ALWAYS thought that to give you something to do.

Oh and I have better than 20 years working for paying people, and the last 15 with 250 shows a year PLUS. So does this make my opinion more or less 'valid'?

Oh here is the word I am looking for thanks for pointing it out. Bloviating is what you are doing.

Yea we can have the 'magic is in the smile of a child' discussion and no "fooling" has taken place. Great. Whoo hooo. How does this get us any closer to anything about exposure?

The idea that in performance of magic there does not need to be a moment of "oh how did that happen?" seems to miss the point of magic.

Here is what the dictionary says about magic and magicians.
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/magician
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/magic

They seem to think the word "illusions" is part of the equasion. Look up that word and you get to the misled decieved aspect.
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/illusions

I am just working with what they seem to say.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
funsway
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Great -- and the word "fool" is never cited once. You may choose to treat "illusion" and "fool" as meaning the same thing -- I do not.

there is nothing cited that "seems to say" that "all" magic effects must contain deception or illusion. My only objection has been attempting to expand the concept of "some" into "all"

perhasp the most widely performed magic effect is during a Catholic Mass. Here a performer says some magic words and change a piece of bread and some wine into something else. It is a matter of beleif or faith as to what the 'something' is, but there is no deception ot 'fooling' going on. Many magcians do repetitions of this effect as "any drink called for" or "baking a cake in a hat," that do involve deception and illusion. This quandary let to performance magic being prohibited in mnay places in Medieval Europe. It was only when magicians 'exposed' their trickery that stage performances were allowed. However, the amount of illusion or fooling is relative to the experience and beliefs of the viewer -- not that of the performer.

but the fact ramains that not all of what people consider that magic is based on 'fooling' either the mind or the eye.

If you were to say, "For the sake of discussion let us pretend that the type of magic we as performers wish to explore always involves some element of deception or illusion" I will agree and find out what you think that has to do with exposure -- the theme of this thread.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst

eBooks at https://www.lybrary.com/ken-muller-m-579928.html questions at ken@eversway.com
Dannydoyle
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Now you wish to take an article of faith for some and equate it with some idiotic magic trick?

Now let me parse words as you have really stepped over a line for many. To many what happens at a Catholic Mass during the Eucherist is a MIRACLE. A Sacrament. The difference is that nobody is trying to decieve anyone in Mass. It is a shared article of faith PERIOD. To say anything more is offensive.

They do not consider it magic, they consider it a miracle. Maybe this is why the prohibition of talking religion huh? Again this is bloviating on your part.

You like to parse words and that is cool. You have the luxury of sitting around and not having to worry if magic fools people or entertains people. You have the luxury of not having to fool people, without making a fool of them. You can bloviate all you like and if you are wrong, well you will probably never find out anyhow. Performers who feed the family with the funds made by performance have no such luxury.

When you get to that point you have to worry more than just the theory of it. It must work. See I like to train dogs. I learned from some great trainers. It is not how I feed my family. Some things I do with my dogs may or may not work with other dogs. My experience is limited to just my dogs. I don't have to worry if the techniques work with any other dogs. I may help others, or whatever but right where the rubber meets the road it is not that big a deal if I am right or wrong. If my friend is wrong, he loses his whole life.

What I am trying to tell you is that you have to come up with a method of working and thinking that "most" of the people who come to the show enjoy. Never going to hit them all, but gotta hit most of them. Since people come to a magic show with the idea that they will be fooled, if you like food with your meals you had darn well better fool them.

The rest, is bloviating in my view.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
funsway
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So, now you have come down to a reasonable suggestion --

That those magicians performing for paying audiences it is essential to make certain assumptions about the audience. One of these is that most of the spectators expect to be deceived or fooled in some manner -- and enjoy it.

Since it is impossible to determine exactly what the spectators think this is as good an assumption as any -- a workable one at any rate. Now -- what does that have to do with exposure? Does an increase in understanding of the technical aspects of a trick increase or decrease the desire of the audience to be fooled?

Then, of course, there are other types of performances in which you do not have a paying audience and the same assumptions may not hold true. Perhaps the most valid one is that most people like to be entertained as long as it doesn't take much thought on their part -- which is why you don't want to set up next to a balloonist.

Assuming that you have extensive experience with various audiences in a performing venue based on your assumption, I would be interested in your views on how exposure applies. I was also hoping for the views of others.

I thank you for some of your views so far as I will change some of my explanations in some of the books I am writing -- which is a source of my livelyhood.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst

eBooks at https://www.lybrary.com/ken-muller-m-579928.html questions at ken@eversway.com
TheCigarPhysic
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The question here is not "Does an effect fool the audience" The question is about exposure ruining the effect. To me exposure is not an issue, it is the presentation that makes the effect magic/believable not the mechanics of the effect.

3000 years ago if you cast a stick down and it turned into a snake it was believed because the gods that gave you the power.

2000 years ago if you converted water into wine or pulled bread from a basket it was believable because you claim to be the son of god. (BTW, I have a degree in Theology. It is known that during the time of Christ there were 6 others making the same claims and many preformed similar miracles. Do no take this as me knocking your beliefs.)

1000 years ago if you changed a silver ring into a gold ring it was believable because you were an alchemist.

100 years ago if you told the future and caused the dead to speak and ring bells it was believable because you were a medium.

All of these effects can be done today but with out a reason for the person to believe they are left with "Wow that was a great trick, I wonder how s/he did it" Here in lies the issue.

Bob Cassidy and his memorizing the cards is a card trick, wrapped in the belief that it is a demonstration of skill. If you think he really is memorizing the cards in 15 sec then you have been fooled by a master.

How many people remember the speed reading guys in the 80's. They had infomercials selling speed reading courses. They would run through a book in a matter of seconds and then toss the book out to the audience. Through some seemingly random selection of page and paragraph they would recite word for word what was in the paragraph. Everyone I know thought it was amazing and that anyone could learn how to do it. The truth was, it was a book test wrapped in a believable story.

It seems to me, from reading through the threads, that the ones who rely on the trick get upset over the exposure of the mechanics and the ones that know how to work an audience do not worry about it as much.
Remember, when you are a psychic It is not what you say that matters, it is what you dont say and how you dont say it.

I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member. -- Groucho Marx
Mr. Mystoffelees
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So, if you have a really good presentation, why work on sleight of hand at all? Just do it right out of the box and let your presentation save you. Matter of fact, why do magic at all? The late George Carlin could do two hours stand up without one trick, and kill...
Also known, when doing rope magic, as "Cordini"
Dannydoyle
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Even though you are being disengenuous you have a poi
nt.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Lawrence O
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To release a bit of the tension in tis interesting thread, I would answer the provocative question of the thread with another question: is it wrong to make love without protection when you have aids?
Magic is the art of proving impossible things in parallel dimensions that can't be reached
Mr. Mystoffelees
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Wow, Lawrence, if that is the way you release tension I would hate to see you be provocative... Smile

Certainly to say it is not wrong would be an egoist perspective, or perhaps even solipsistic. If self is the most important thing, or even the only thing, how does one care what happens to others?

Of course I am assuming you mean with someone who is not likewise afflicted and/or without their full knowledge...
Also known, when doing rope magic, as "Cordini"
Whit Haydn
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I tend to disagree with Maskelyne and Devant on this. They felt "secrets" were irrelevant, and wanted their magic appreciated for its theatrical artistry--the more the audience knew about how their magic worked, the more they would appreciate it artisitically.

I think this is a magician's sort of appreciation, which should be different from the spectator's.

We want the spectator to be left on the horns of a dilemma, we need them to be fooled by our deception, or else they can release themselves from the dilemma. If anyone tells them the secret, their dilemma is resolved, and they can forget the event.

If the audience is even sufficiently informed about the technology of deception we use, they will not be overwhelmed and astonished by the dilemma in a way that is possible with someone who has no idea what is possible with trickery.

I think exposure is bad, but fighting it is tilting at windmills. I wait for the current overexposure of magic in general to fade, and then the fad of exposure will fade as well.
Pakar Ilusi
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Is exposure wrong?

Depends on the context.

Houdini exposing supposed Psychics is not wrong.

The Masked Magician spoiling the fun for people watching Magic is wrong.

Imho...
"Dreams aren't a matter of Chance but a matter of Choice." -DC-
Mr. Mystoffelees
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Quote:
On 2010-06-11 14:32, Whit Haydn wrote:

I think exposure is bad, but fighting it is tilting at windmills. I wait for the current overexposure of magic in general to fade, and then the fad of exposure will fade as well.


I think tilting at windmills now and then can be a good thing. My experience has been that waiting for things to get better usually does not work. Check out Mariano's video in this section... inspirational, at least.

Motivational Video Against Exposure (MarianoG)

Jim
Also known, when doing rope magic, as "Cordini"
aechecop
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Great video... don't see it having a great impact on exposure though. Inspirational? For sure.
Jonathan Townsend
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Could save a lot of time here if folks looked up the term apologetics and then the word apology. Some might come to consider that Ambrose Beirce's work was redacted. Smile

Yes, you can think of words as trick cards.

Now that we've had our little bit of exposure to language as method of concealing meaning (gasp) - what would we proffer to those we seek to entertain?
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Dougini
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Quote:
On 2010-06-11 17:04, Pakar Ilusi wrote:
Is exposure wrong...The Masked Magician spoiling the fun for people watching Magic is wrong...


I'd like to add to this (I don't disagree with anyone here).

Years ago, I bought Prohibition. I LOVED it. I picked up the skill quickly, and was very successful in frying people with it. It became my favorite effect, and it had cost me around $30.

Then, The Masked Moron....er, sorry..."Magician", exposed it on national TV. It ruined the trick for a lot of people. 3 out of 4 times, I would hear, "He has a ****** on his ******, I saw it on the Magician with a Mask Show!" or something similar.

I believe that trick was Charlie Justice's invention. Can you imagine what HE thought, after seeing this? What would he say? Was it right/wrong? If I originally came up with such an effect, and old MM exposed it on National TV...I'd be crushed. That's just me, though. I'm with Pakar on this one. OK, my rant is done...sorry guys, continue! Smile

Doug
Jonathan Townsend
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Yeah, okay, but did you go and learn Ramsay's coin in jam jar routine?
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Micheal Leath
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First, I only quickly read through this thread.

It seems that there are some who think you don't have to fool someone for it to be magic. Maybe that's the problem with a lot of magicians today. No wonder they are so bad.

Now, that's not directed at anyone in particular, so don't take offense.
Dougini
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Quote:
On 2010-08-04 17:30, Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Yeah, okay, but did you go and learn Ramsay's "Coin In Jam Jar" routine?


I'm afraid not, Jon. I have a very limited knowledge of Ramsey. Never even heard of him until a number of years ago. I do still use the Ramsey Subtlety, though.

Can ya point me to that routine? I'm homeless and broke, so buying books is out of the question.

Thanks!
Doug
Jonathan Townsend
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Doug, to start, he spelled his name Ramsay - two a's.
His only known student, Andrew Galloway has taken the trouble to write up what he learned from John Ramsay in three books, two of which can be purchased for very reasonable sums.
As to the subtlety so many abuse in his name - I am truly sorry - but such is the price of a free society where those who cannot read or reason may despoil tools crafted by those who spent a lifetime working on such things.

If you use email - I might be able to offer some help as regards that item.

Jon
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Bill Hallahan
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Quote:
On 2010-05-17 21:51, TheCigarPhysic wrote:
The simple fact that there are billions of methods that have been written about, more effects than any one person can remember, and multiple ways of doing a single effect. It Just means that what he may think is the method used is more than likely not. Add to this that people tend to see what they want and others there will argue that it could not have been that way because they saw xxxxx. Think about the way an actual effect looks and the way a lay person describes it.

A magician who wants to astonish an audience requires that the audience doesn't know any method to achieve a magical effect the magician wants to produce - and even that's not enough! This saying by a famous magician explains the issue well.

Simon Aronson wrote:
Quote:
There is a world of difference between a spectator's not knowing how something's done versus his knowing that it can't be done.

So, as a consequence, while there are sometimes many methods to produce a similar effect, you only need to expose one of them to ruin many, or possibly even all, of the various effects produced by the different methods.

In addition, if the performer has spent the last year honing and polishing an act, adding bits of business; jokes, adjusted the pacing and timing, and suddenly he can't astonish the audience because they know how it's done, all his work is lost. He might as well be an ordinary non-magical entertainer at that point, since he won't be able to amaze the audience.

TheCigarPhysic wrote:
Quote:
You should also to take into account that some one who is not interested in magic will watch a show like the masked magician or read a book about magic and he or she may remember one method out of the whole book. If I hand you a book on auto repair and you read though it, do you think you would be able to tell what is wrong with your car when it will not start? How about a year later? Better yet, how many magic secrets have you read the method of, and how many do you remember how to do? Like learning a foreign language, if you do not use it in every day life you will more than likely forget it.

This is often false. Someone who learned the secret to the Linking Rings will likely know it forever. And, for other effects, many people will remember there was a method, even if they don't recall the details. This also will prevent them from being amazed. Finally, even if the method is so arcane that it is hard to remember and a lot of time passes, if only 10% of the audience remember the method, they won't be astonished.

TheCigarPhysic wrote:
Quote:
Heck, if we follow the logic of "Once it is revealed they will remember it when they see it" then three card monty is the most useless trick, just because EVERYONE knows how it works. So doing three card monty on the street means that no one will bet on it?

One famous magician here has pointed out that the Three Card Monte is not generally presented a as magic trick, but as a con. Also, you are mistaken that everyone knows how it is done. Most non-magicians don't have any idea how it's done.

The magic we do is not about deception. The magic we do requires deception. If the secret is known, there will be no astonishment caused by the effect that is supposed to be magical. There will be no lingering amazement. Such an act might still be entertaining, but it won't be a magic act at all, not in the sense of magic that we magicians aspire to produce. At best it will be like watching a Harry Potter movie - engaging, but not astonishing. This is known at theatrical magic - where the magic isn't astonishing at all.
Humans make life so interesting. Do you know that in a universe so full of wonders, they have managed to create boredom. Quite astonishing.
- The character of ‘Death’ in the movie "Hogswatch"
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