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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Smooth as silk » » Silk Fountain With Diamond Silks (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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fccfp
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NJ
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Has anyone made a fountain with diamond silks? I would think that this would allow you to load more silks, therefore a larger display, in a smaller package.

How many silks would you use in a fountain? 15? 20? 30? More?
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hugmagic
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I just remade Dale Salwak's silk for his silk fountain. He used 60 - 18 silks.

Personally, I have found that 14 or 15 silks is more than an enough and it does not take so long to fold it.

Diamond silks will not work for a fountain as you cannot do the trap fold for them. Now if you want to use a regular fountain and add a few loose diamond silks in between the folds to fall out that is an entirely different matter.

Personally, I like to keep my silks all together and off the the floor.
Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
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Natural Mystic
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Hi fccp,

I'm putting together a version of Scott Alexander's GREAT routine called "Sense of Color" from his DVD 10 0'Clock show, using 12 18" diamond cut silks. The silk fountain set-up is based on Jay Scott Berry's method per his "Illusioneering 2000" lecture notes. The Jay Scott Berry method uses 8 24" diamond cut silks which at $9.00 each is a little costly for my budget. However, I purchased the 12 18" diamond cut silks from Hocus-Pocus for $2.50 each, the load is smaller and easier to steal and the climax of the routine is still visually stunning. The "Sense of Color" routine can be done close-up,parlor and stage.

Other magic Café members made these comments:

Jay Scott Berry has a silk fountain set up using diamond cut silks for a really HUGE production of silks in his "Illusioneering 2000" lecture notes.

Malini,

Yeah, Jay Scott Berry's one is really cool. I made it up myself and it looks great and gets a good audience reaction

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......;start=0

I hope this helps.

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Paul G
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General Grant's silk fountain uses diamond cut silks. His method of folding the silks does not employ the trap fold, which enables a quick set-up. As a result, many more silks can be used. If you do a search under 'silk fountains' you'll find that Harry Murphy uses the Grant's version with between 50 and 100 silks, I believe. In General Grant's version the silks are not sewn together and fall to the floor, so you need a parasol or something for them to fall into. So, the main advantage of the Grant's version is that many silks can be used and the set-up is quick. While I've never seen this version in action I believe it looks like a silk explosion as opposed to a fountain. Maybe others can comment on this. Whether or not you want the silks to fall to the floor is a personal issue.
Paul
Bill Hegbli
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The traditional silk fountain is the "Blooming of Floweres' type of affect. With each side the fold creates a blooming effect, opening into a beautiful burst of color. I have seen a Canadian magician use 2 of each color to good effect.

The Slydini method just lets the silks fall from the hands. This is much the same as the General Grant method. My opinion is it is not as beautiful as the blooming effect.

For the blooming effect to take place, I think the standard 18" square silk creates the most blooming floral type of affect.
Vietnam Veteran 1967, Sgt. E-5

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hugmagic
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I have nothing against the General Grant method. It does look good. You can even go back to old load in a woman's stocking and kind of squeeze the silks out of it.

The main thing I do not like is the silks on the floor. It just a personal thing with me. Gen uses an umbrella to catch his but even still there is the occassional silk that misses.
Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
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Bob Sanders
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Richard,

Using an old stocking is as old-timey as my suggesting that someone use a lady's hair net to produce a load. No one knew what I was talking about.

I've gone modern and use half a plastic Easter egg with a loop. I agree with you that I don't like props on the floor either. (Tony Slydini taught that method in the 60s.) But I don't really like the diamonds used for that either. I just bought three dozen diamond silks but I rarely use them except for filler loads. I don't like the poor seams or the shape. The 5mm square silks load fine. I do mix sizes 12, 18 & 24. Mine are tacked together.

The only time I'll purposefully put a silk on the stage floor is in MisMade Flag. Even with that I have had shows at fairs in particular where people would try to come on stage and pick them up. It's just not for me. I really try to keep the action above the waist. (The Lord knows it's an expanding stage!)

Bob
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Donald Dunphy
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Quote:
On 2004-06-28 23:45, Bob Sanders wrote:
Using an old stocking is as old-timey as my suggesting that someone use a lady's hair net to produce a load. No one knew what I was talking about.


Bob -

On Duane Laflin's video, "Sensational Silk Magic", I recall that he shows / teaches how to make a homemade silk fountain utilizing a ladies' stocking for part of the workings. (I am not speaking about the video/dvd he now has specifically about the silk fountain... I don't have that one.)

So, that method is still being used and taught by modern workers. Not as old-timey as you think. Smile

- Donald.
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
Dave Scribner
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General Grants fountain is not made to be pretty like other fountains. It is a bare hand silk production of 50 silks. They just seem to melt into view as the ball of silk gets bigger and then overflow like a fountain. The umbrella idea is the best I've seen to catch the silks. Otherwise they do fall to the floor but as mentioned already, it's a matter of personal preference.

Yes, Harry Murphy does the Grant version and so do I. It's different and I guess that's why we do it.
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Harry Murphy
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Dave and Bill (wmhegbil) are absolutely correct when they say that the Grant method is not as pretty as the “blooming” versions.

I have used both. I use the Grant almost exclusively for two reasons. The first is that the set-up and re-set is almost instantaneous. By the time you have one of the 18-inch silks properly folded in the “blooming” method I am totally reset!

There was a time when I was doing three shows back to back. I needed instant reset tricks. This version of the Silk Fountain worked perfectly. In the time it takes you to read this short paragraph the re-set is done!

The second reason is that there is a totally impossibly HUGE load that seems to simply materialize between the hands and cascade to the floor. I do use as many as 100 silks of differing sizes (several apparently 36-inch, a number of 9 and 12 inch and the majority being 18 inches). In short it plays huge.

Let me say that the Grant method does NOT use a “traditional” diamond cut silk. It uses a different type of silk altogether (I won’t tip it here).

As to falling on the stage? I totally respect Richards and Bob’s position. In general it is not good for the silks to hit a filthy floor.

However, remember that there is nothing sacred about a silk or any prop for that matter. Respect them, keep them in good repair, and retire them when their time has come. Keeping them off the floor will prolong their life and your investment. Let me say that all of my older silks (those used in various tricks) tend to get retired to the Silk fountain. Once they start to become a bit frayed, they will get turned into load silks for the silk fountain. All silks are washed and pressed and then used. They are clean and present well for the brief seconds they are seen dropping from the hands.

I do tend to perform the trick over an open container (think Tony Mark’s “box” table or the open parasol). I don’t worry if one or five silks miss the container and hit the floor.

The audience sees a cascade of silks as they slowly appear and drop from the hands. It is clear to all who watch that they are not sewn together.

The silks cover a final load beautifully.

I can strongly recommend that everyone use the Marconic (Martini, Lauflan, Alexander, etc.) version especially if the set-up time is of no worry. It is very inexpensive (compared to the Grant), very, very easy to perform, and most important, as Bill (wmhegbil) said, it is “beautiful”.

Of course that will leave the Grant method to Dave and me!
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Bob Sanders
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It's great to see young guys using silk. It makes real magic. There are very few things in magic that deliver so much bang for the buck and establish you as a magician to the audience.

And Donald, thanks for helping feel that the times haven't completely left me. If a regular dealer looked through my gimmicks boxes, I'm should he would think I was putting him on. But I do use that "stuff" as wacky as it may look. I had the good fortune to acquire some of Burling Hull's things when he retired. Among them is a box of "stuff" I originally though was just breakage. But I was corrected when I asked. Those were the gimmicks and parts (and I do mean "parts") of bought props that actually made things work. Some had been "modified" by mashing them in doorways, things removed, paint, tape, and even a piece of a tin can. There was also a supply of mouse traps for springs. If future explorers dig up a magician's secret stash and try to apply it to normal humans of the time, the rest of the world is going to sue us!

My reason for keeping silks off the floor is not just to keep them clean. Lucy will tell you that we really buy the silks. (I just bought $746.98 of just silks 6/21/04. Of those 116 pieces were just utility red ones!) I do agree that the silks should be clean and look good.

My reasons for keeping silks off the stage floor are several. First, if I go down stage dropping silks on the floor it leaves a mess for someone else to deal with in front of the curtain. Secondly, it does often invite members of the audience to try to get them and security is usually too late to prevent it or make matters worse.

My other reason is to try to keep the act above the waist for better vision and focus for the audience. Like Harry pointed out, you know (the audience doesn't) that there is going to be another major production as a consequence of having the great cover the trick provides the magician. If the audience is watching the floor they will miss the rabbit, bowls of gold fish, bottle of wine or whatever is the final production from the fountain (or undercover thereof, if my attorney is reading). Rope pieces and an occassional piece of newspaper are all I ever leave on stage in front of the curtain anymore. In my younger days I often left spring flowers out there. They disappear now. In the time I did stage magic for fashion / modeling shows and Hilton, there was a prohibition against leaving anything on stage that compromised footing. So much of it is habit from experience. I try to avoid shows in the flat without a stage. But many magic shows for many other working magicians are in the flat (only one level of flooring) and the working conditions are entirely different from what I try to work.

I don't have a problem with those who drop silks on the floor. (I have even been know to throw one down with a superball in it as a joke. With practice, it will return to you.) It is just not usually needed in my show.

Another problem I reschedule is set up. For multiple shows, I don't reuse the silks. Each show is prepacked separately so that the box or bag is just opened for that specific show. Silks after the show are only packed to go home; and not to go back onto stage that day. It keeps panics to a milder crisis. It surprises some people to learn that I don't even use the same rope shears in the next show. Back in the 60s I was in the U.S. Navy. There I learned about the PERT System used on ships and I simply apply it to magic too. I believe in damage control!

This is a really good thread. I'm truly surprised that more magicians don't take advantage of silk fountains. They can be done without a sound system, patter, music, or a common language. It is something out of the ordinary that is surprising, pretty, and time consuming! It can easily deliver the props to your hands needed for the next trick to keep the routine flowing. Likewise, silk fountains make a good ending or emergency filler. You can also match colors for the school, company, season, etc.

Enjoy! (Did I drop that silk?)

Bob
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Bill Hegbli
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Bob,

The main drawback to performing the Silk Fountain is a flawless steal of that giant bundle. I have never seen a good/perfect method to aquire the silks.

In almost all the presentations I have personnally witnessed, obtaining the load was obvious. Usually, requiring walking behind a table.

Any good referrance would be appreciated.
Vietnam Veteran 1967, Sgt. E-5

Graduate of Chavez College of Prestidigitation and Showmanship

"Magic With A Twist Of Comedy"
Dave Scribner
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Bill, that's one of the drawbacks of being experienced magicians. It's hard to make steals without us seeing them.

As I mentioned before, I use Grant's method but I actually do a body steal as if it were a dove. In my method, I have the load on the right side almost to the rear of my jacket. I enter the stage from the left so it isn't noticed. I pick up a silk from the table and do splitting silks returning them to my left hand as I reach up, remove the flower from my lapel ala rose to silk. Adding it to the other two in my left hand, I make the steal and proceed with the fountain. I have plenty of cover for the steal since the splitting is done with 24" silks. Eliminates the need for a table and is a surprise production.
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Ron Reid
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I saw Lawrence Parsons do double silk fountains ala "double doves". Everything was the same, except silk fountains were used instead of doves. It was very impressive!

Ron
Bob Sanders
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Bill,

Dave has a point. After enough years of this stuff you get to where you see "spooks" all the time. We are much tougher on ourselves than an audience will ever be.

In my Coors and Ramada shows I did a double steal. The first load was a body load with a loop and half a plastic Easter egg. It would produce about a gallon of silks. Since silks were getting to be too much to hold, I would show an empty hat and in the process of showing the empty hat, make the second steal from the back of my Doves to Rabbit. That bundle was the size of a grape fruit. It just got tossed on top of the other silks in the hat and the hat just "boiled" over with silks for about six minutes. Then you know what a dove man would produce next (unless there was a reason to produce a bottle of Coors or another product). The most fun I ever had with the final load was when I produced the Police Chief's handcuffs. (Sometimes you just don't have enough birds!)

Bob
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Michael Taggert
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Wow! so where do I sign Up! you guys have finally convinced me that a fountain has to be my next routine added to the show. I have long amdired the routine but felt it might be too teadeuos to use. apparently not. Im convinced.
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Yep, I use a silk fountain near the top of the show as a follow up to my Sympathetic Silk routine. I visual, pretty and my P&A fountain has a load bag for my transition to my Billiard Ball routine that follows. We had two back to back shows one day with 15 minutes between. It's possible to reset quick if you have to.
Carlo DeBlasio
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Natural Mystic
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Dave Scribner,


In Scott Alexander's routine called "Sense of Color", from his DVD 10 0'Clock show, has a re-appearance of one of the silks that provides perfect cover for the steal. Also,The "Sense of Color" routine can be done close-up,parlor and stage.

One love!
"You never change the existing reality by
fighting it. Instead, create a new model that
makes the old one obsolete."
-- R. Buckminster Fuller
hugmagic
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Check out the demo on the website to see how good a fountain can look.

I just watched a chap from Japan do the stocking method fountain at IBM. Sorry, I do not have his name with me in St. Louis. His act was great lots of color and flash. Lots of appearing fans with hanging silks which I make a similar version. But his fountain look like and eruption of silk. I really think the blooming action is prettier.
Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
www.hughesmagic.com
email-hugmagic@raex.com
Write direct as I will be turning off my PM's.
MagicbyCarlo
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I have to say, my next fountain will be one of Richards. It just looks awesome! I love the large final silk. You could produce a large item from that cover!
Carlo DeBlasio
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<BR>and all around fun guy!
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