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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Don't Diss The "Easy" Tricks! (8 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

KenRyan
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Just wanted to share a quick, but important lesson I learned this past week. I was at Disneyland (carrying a coin all day, of course:-P). At night, I ended up in The Magic Shop. My wife wouldn't let me go during the day:). After the guy behind the counter did 3 tricks for everyone (all of which could be purchased at the shop, of course), a little girl asked if he could do more tricks. And he said he needed to help some other people. So for some reason (I still don't really know why), she turned to me and asked if I could do one!:). I said I could (but told her I didn't work there and the trick wasn't something she cold buy), but I only had one coin with me. I would have done a Crimp Change (thanks Vinnie, MB and Ken!), if I had had 2 as I usually did. Sigh. So I quickly thought about a quick 1-coin trick I could do and ended up just doing a "day-1-of-magic-learning" trick for her and her mom - a simple French Drop. I made a big show of crumbling the coin to nothing in my clean hand and they were delighted when I revealed the vanish:). Claps and everything. Then of course, I did the age-old production from behind her ear.

My point here is that I had gotten caught up in wanting to do the "super cool" tricks I'd learned and have done for people (Tenkai Pennies, Crimp Change, Flurry, Spellbound, etc.), and sort of unconsciously dissed the "easy" tricks. But I had forgotten that those supposedly easy tricks can be just as magical as any of the others if you do them well. So don't diss the basics!:).

Cheers!

Ken
Dougini
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The Beautiful State Of Maine
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Good point Ken! I'll never forget the flipstick I did with a pencil at a corner store here in Maine. Their reaction was priceless! I got a reputation there just for that!

Doug
DaveGripenwaldt
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Your comment took me back! I got pointed to that lesson when I was, maybe 19. The guy that cut my hair found out I did magic and asked to see something. I did some complex, multiple-phase card routine that ended with me locating his card. My miracle was met with, "Why didn't you just pull out my card?"

Was it a bad trick? No...it has gotten gasps in other performances...but it was over complicated for the situation and the guy I was performing for. Two ambitious card moves would have worked just as well. That's when I started thinking about reading the audience, the situation, keeping it simple and clear....you know, actually taking the audience into consideration instead of acting like I was doing a trick I liked in the mirror and they just happened to be watching. Smile
RedHatMagic
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There is a bigger point here. The method (easy or hard) is almost irrelevant. The effect is the thing. If the trick is hard we need to ask whether we can make it simpler, but a hard trick you have performed 1000 times is simple.
Let the Entertainment Commence!
Doug Trouten
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There's a great thought in this thread about the difference between "method" and "effect." I think magicians tend to be "method" people. I love an elegant move or a cleverly-made gadget. Of course, that means the part of a trick that interest me most is something and audience should never see. If I'm performing for myself or for other magic enthusiasts, a wonderful method will kill. But for a lay audience, it's all about the effect. Simple method does not necessarily equal simple effect.
It's still magic even if you know how it's done.
Terry Pratchett
funsway
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old things in new ways - new things in old ways
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There are times when everything is right and whatever you do will me seen as magic. I call this a Proximal Setting. You had one. Good job!

The key is to be prepared when "that moment" arrives -- which is why I favor effects with "found objects." What you performed could have been also done with piece of candy,
bottle cap, key, etc. It was time to "keep it simple" with simple objects -- one of which can be a coin.

You want simple because you do not wish to risk loosing the moment where the observer has already agreed to "must be magic."

Years ago I had started a book on "Six Essential Sequences" that every magicians should have mastered for such a moment.

You have encouraged me to dust it off. And RedHat is correct. It is not just out task to make the impossible seem real, but the difficult to seem simple.

Life is complicated enough. Embracing awe and wonder should be the simplest thing we do today.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst



ShareBooks at www.eversway.com * questions at funsway@eversway.com
Yellowcustard
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I just want to add something what Funsway brought regarding every day items. Me trick for these occasions is Crazy Man Handcuffs I do it with a line about I am to demo something that magicians have done for 1000s of years. I always carry a few elastic bands but can also borrow them. I do the trick once in my hands then I get the viewers to hold one band as I do it again. But every time I do it I leave the rubber bands behind. I feel this adds to the magic it proves to them you used nothing tricky but also your pointing out it you that is special (Done right it don't sound as stupid as it dose written here)

I have had it happen to many but also heard many stories of magicians having people say hay you did a trick for me years ago and I still have that item. Singed card is the classic. I have a effect were someone make a wish and blows it into a bubble and the bubble become a solid ball. A very simple trick but I have had people carry those wishes with them in bags made in to jewelry.

A bit of a ramble but I hope you get my point.
Enjoy your magic,

and let others enjoy it as well!
wwhokie1
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Great magic can be found in simple, easy to do tricks. And sometimes very difficult to do tricks can provide very weak magic. However, often the difference is not the trick but the performance, which is where the magic really takes place. I agree that "easy" tricks should not be overlooked. I do a mixture of "easy" and "harder" tricks. Some of the "easy" stuff has a lot of potential, and one advantage is that it frees you up to focus more heavily on your performance. But as RedHatMagic pointed out, the harder stuff becomes easier with appropriate practice.
BeThePlunk
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Hey, funsway - Let me know when your book is ready. It sounds like a great concept. Your posts are always thoughtful and stimulating. I imagine that your book would be a great contribution. David
Aus
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I believe KenRyans lesson is something magicians beginner and experienced need to come back to time and again to refocus on whats important. To my own observations on the Café and abroad we do seem to fall into the trap of over complicating simple matters in what we perceive to be better variations of existing ideas.

Magically

Aus
Bin
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I have a short ring routine that I threw together out of moves I can already do well.

The part that, without fail, gets the best and most vocal reactions is when I do the simple cigar band finger switch thing.
Remember Quacky.
Mark Williams
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Hi Guys and Gals, A good buddy of mine filmed this short video just the other day. It, too, reminds us all that you should never disrespect the easy tricks.

Check it out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7dOh2mGU0E


Best Magical Regards,

Mark Williams
"Once is Magic!! Twice is an Education!!"
pjpastir
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Hi Mark,
I mostly work with cards but really enjoyed watching that and would like to learn it. What is it called? Is it in Bobo or where would I find it? Thanks

Best Regards
Paul
rik brooks
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I'll never forget that time that I was with my wife at one of the casinos in Tunica, Mississippi. We were at the gift shop and I saw they had a display box of dice that had been used at the casino and retired.

"Oh, TRICK DICE" I said.

"Oh, no sir. These were used in our casino they are absolutely fair."

"No, I've seen these." I said, taking one out of the box. She assured me that I was mistaken.

"Really? On regular dice the sum of opposing sides is always 7. It's called the rule of 7"

"Huh?"

"Add the numbers on opposite side of the die." I said, handing it go her. She flipped it around a bit... "7" she said.

"Right." I said, taking back the die. "But if you press the middle spot on the side that shows 5... I said, demonstrating. Then I did the paddle move and showed the 'opposite side' was now a 6 rather than the expected 2.

I pressed the middle spot on the five and flipped it over without the paddle move to show a 2. Then I handed it back. My wife and I walked away. A few minutes later my wife excused herself and told me to wait for her.

When she got back she said, "I had to tell her that you are a magician. She was furiously pressed that spot on the five and flipping the die around."

Sometimes life is good.

Quote:
On Jul 17, 2015, KenRyan wrote:
Just wanted to share a quick, but important lesson I learned this past week. I was at Disneyland (carrying a coin all day, of course:-P). At night, I ended up in The Magic Shop. My wife wouldn't let me go during the day:). After the guy behind the counter did 3 tricks for everyone (all of which could be purchased at the shop, of course), a little girl asked if he could do more tricks. And he said he needed to help some other people. So for some reason (I still don't really know why), she turned to me and asked if I could do one!:). I said I could (but told her I didn't work there and the trick wasn't something she cold buy), but I only had one coin with me. I would have done a Crimp Change (thanks Vinnie, MB and Ken!), if I had had 2 as I usually did. Sigh. So I quickly thought about a quick 1-coin trick I could do and ended up just doing a "day-1-of-magic-learning" trick for her and her mom - a simple French Drop. I made a big show of crumbling the coin to nothing in my clean hand and they were delighted when I revealed the vanish:). Claps and everything. Then of course, I did the age-old production from behind her ear.

My point here is that I had gotten caught up in wanting to do the "super cool" tricks I'd learned and have done for people (Tenkai Pennies, Crimp Change, Flurry, Spellbound, etc.), and sort of unconsciously dissed the "easy" tricks. But I had forgotten that those supposedly easy tricks can be just as magical as any of the others if you do them well. So don't diss the basics!:).

Cheers!

Ken
Mark Williams
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Quote:
On Jul 23, 2015, pjpastir wrote:
Hi Mark,
I mostly work with cards but really enjoyed watching that and would like to learn it. What is it called? Is it in Bobo or where would I find it? Thanks

Best Regards
Paul


Hi Paul, I'm not sure where my buddy learned this effect, yet I'm pretty sure it has been published in several beginner books. Looking through my own library, I came across this effect in a book by Will Dexter called 131 Magic Tricks for Amateurs. In that book, it's called 1-2-3 GONE! Check your PM Inbox for further details.

Best Magical Regards,

Mark Williams
"Once is Magic!! Twice is an Education!!"
MGordonB
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Hi Paul & Mark

I think this is a version of an old bar stunt, but the fellow in the video added something extra to make it more magical.

I used to do the first part a lot when I was a kid. The first part is easily figured out by watching the video (maybe in slo mo?). The part that’s magical appears in the second phase where the fellow added a nice simple little vanish. The vanish can be figured out pretty easily once you know how the first part works. The fellow in the video does a nice job with his presentation and in so doing makes something simple appear more magical than it really is.

I used to do the first part when I was younger and I was eventually able to snatch a stack of 10 coins (usually pennies) from my elbow. The problem is that whenever I missed I would end up spraying a bunch of pennies loudly around the room and I wasn’t very diligent at finding them all again (they were just pennies after all). My mother got so fed up with finding pennies all over the place (they make a terrible racket when they get sucked up in a vacuum cleaner) that she forbade me from doing this in the house.
pjpastir
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Hi Mark,
Thank you so much for your reply and pm. I am 61 and still enjoyed and was fooled by this effect. I have 3 grand kids and can't wait to show this.
Paul
Mark Williams
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Quote:
On Jul 23, 2015, pjpastir wrote:
Hi Mark,
Thank you so much for your reply and pm. I am 61 and still enjoyed and was fooled by this effect. I have 3 grand kids and can't wait to show this.
Paul




There you go! Glad I could help you out, Paul.

Best Magical Regards,

Mark Williams
"Once is Magic!! Twice is an Education!!"
Bin
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Quote:
On Jul 23, 2015, MGordonB wrote:
The fellow in the video does a nice job with his presentation and in so doing makes something simple appear more magical than it really is.

Isn't that what it's all about, eh?
Remember Quacky.
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