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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Time after time » » I can't use a mirror. (2 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Regular user
116 Posts

Profile of BlindWizard
Something that has had me thinking from the time I started looking into magic and practicing is using a mirror or video is Impossible for me. I am legally blind. I can read if the text is at my nose and large and I can see color and light but there is no depth to anything and nothing has an edge everything blends into everything else. It's like walking in front of a painting looking very close at it all the time because nothing looks further away then anything else . It's all right at your face if that is understandable.

I can read books and even watch video (to an extent). I go slow in my work and break it down little by little. So reading and practice I can work out a trick. But how do I know my angles are right and I am not flashing.

Any suggestions, tips or help would be great. Thank you.
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Iloilo, Philippines
200 Posts

Profile of Tukaram
Since you can watch videos, to an extent, perhaps video your practice and watch it afterwards?
Mr. Woolery
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Inner circle
Fairbanks, AK
2114 Posts

Profile of Mr. Woolery
Really, you have a couple of options. First is to get a practice partner. I know very well how hard this is, so I'm not making the suggestion lightly. But if you have a buddy to work with, you can ask for brutal honesty about angles and flashing.

Second idea is to specialize in material that is angle-proof. I think it is possible to specialize in material that capitalizes on your blindness. I suppose this is going to be mentalism rather than magic, but there are several classics that don't rely on sight. You can do "seeing with the fingers" routines (see Ian Rowland's Sense of Touch, which he says on his Penguin lecture we are welcome to download from torrent sites - otherwise I would not have done - and also Corrinda has a routine with identifying cards by touch. Docc Hilford has a similar concept in one of his booklets, but I don't recall which as I have only heard about it. Lulu or something). There's a classic trick with three different color cards that you have a participant pick up one while you don't look, then you can tell which one. I wish I remembered the name of it. Muscle reading might take time to learn, but it is a legitimate skill and probably the closest thing we have to real mind reading. There are book tests that you can do without seeing. There are versions of the Princess Card trick that can be done without you ever looking at the cards. Angles are there, but easily dealt with. Peter Marucci had a couple of versions of a 9-card trick where you never touch the card and you can even do it over the phone.

While it will always be more of a challenge to deal with this stuff if you can't see what your audience sees, I think that if you create a bit of a back-story to your performing character that capitalizes on being blind, that might help make some things more believable. We've all heard the old story that blind people have increased hearing to compensate for the loss of one sense. I don't believe it, but we've all heard it. Now, if you play on that a bit, it lets you explain how you can do things that you and I know are tricks but your audience doesn't have to know isn't legit.

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116 Posts

Profile of BlindWizard
Thank you Patrick. I have one of the classic tricks where you hold the deck behind you and find the spectator's card by feel. I am studying RRTCM breaking things down to see what can be done without sight and a lot can. Bobo is good too just taking a lot of time to learn before I am willing to show anything.

I did the cups and balls for the kids this last holiday and it went well even only doing a few tricks with it that I know.

I am working on a blind wizard character because it's pretty close to reality do to my work and how I dress.

I will have to look up the things you mentioned thank you so much and let me know if you have any more suggestions.
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