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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The April 2004 entrée: Wesley James » » Your Creative Process? » » TOPIC IS LOCKED (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

dmk_kirkland
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Hi Wesley,

Having read some of published material and seeing the amount of thought you put into your effects, I'm interested in hearing more about your creative process.

How do you go about weaving the trick, the theatrical elements, and the plot together? At what point do you feel it's ready to perform for people or try it out?

In one of your other posts you mentioned using theatrical elements to set the rules for the audience. Do you have any reference material for learning more about incorporating theatrical aspects into magic?

Thanks for your help.
Cheers,
David
Wesley James
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David,
I wrote an entire set of Notes on the subject, Make Me Care. There isn't a single effect in those notes--so, of course, they aren't my biggest sellers--but they explore the topic in some detail, though not comprehensively. Those Notes might address the areas you're inquiring about.

As for my creative process, I'm afraid I can't be very helpful in that regard. While essentially I agree with Edison, creativity is a mix of inspiration and perspiration, I am by training a scientist, I need an algorithm. The best guidance I can offer is "Question everything." Look at every effect you want to develop to determine how you would want the effect to look, without regard to how you can get it to look that way. Once after you have that image in mind, see how close you can get with the tools at our disposal. If you find yourself in a situation where something needs to be accomplished for which no method/technique exists, you have a challenge. From such challenges come the impetus for creativity.

Another tip I can offer is, don't stiffle yourself. When you are brainstorming a problem--and you need to allow yourself time to do so--follow your mind wherever it leads you without critically judging the result or confining it to only the problem you sat down to explore. You may have sat down to work on a light bulb but if you create an x-ray machine in the process, that's okay too. Besides, the first thought you get may not be workable but exploring can yield delightful fruit.

Oh, and learn to enjoy the process. I believe creativity is a gift from God. Much like true meditation, it is a communion with spirit, let go and let God. I hope those tips will help you understand my process a bit, your mileage may differ.

Wesley James
JimMaloney
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You may also wish to check out Half Baked Issue #7, which features an article from Wes on creativity and productivity.

http://www.brainpoke.com (Go to the shop section and then click on Year Two (#5-8))

-Jim
Books and Magazines for sale -- more than 200 items (Last updated January 17th, 2014. Link goes to public Google Doc.)
Wesley James
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Thanks, Jim, I couldn't recall which issue it was in and I'm not at home to be able to check.

Wesley James
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The April 2004 entrée: Wesley James » » Your Creative Process? » » TOPIC IS LOCKED (0 Likes)
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