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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #1 
Are you "risk-adverse"?  Or do you relish in performing something that might or might not go as planned because the potential payoff is so great?

I made a post recently where I recounted something I used to do long ago that, when it hit, was pretty fun to do.  

Then I went to 'The Jerx' blog and found that his subject for today was 'Taking Risks'.  Funny how that often works.

Here is a link for those inclined.  I will make one caveat.  If profanity offends you, this isn't the blog for you.  Some of his posts are totally free of it, some seem to wallow in it, along with commentary that would make the proverbial sailor blush.  I choose to read it knowing all of that because there is still value to me in reading it.  So with that said, here goes.

http://www.thejerx.com/

Like many of Andy's blog subjects, he says things I agree with and things I disagree with.  I think there's a lot of food for though in this blog entry and the one that immediately preceded it.  They are related in many respects.
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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #2 
I'm averse to a risk that can make me look really stupid. Getting busted with invisible thread would be the best example I can think of. Imagining that some of the spectators see the thread, even if they don't say anything, makes me cringe inside. "Look Mr. magic is making this bill float...." vis a vis "... I can see the thread! This looks so stupid..." OUCH!!

Other than that, I can easily deal with a trick going south. I just don't want to look like an idiot.

I can still recall a friend of mine who's a pro "floating" a bill at an Abbott's Get Together years ago. It was in the Legion. He was on the elevated area between the bar area and the front room. I was about 15 feet away. His thread was hooked to the wall in front of him and he was about 8 feet from the wall with the bill "floating" about half way to the wall. The thread was totally visible. He was mumbling incantations and using his hands to show that he was controlling the bill. That image is enough to keep me from using IT in that way. I might use a loop that's only in the open for a few seconds to create an animation. I've seen thread too often. 

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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #3 
That's a great thread story!  And a harsh reminder of the limitations of IT in the real world.  I don't want this to turn into a thread-bashing thread (how's that for irony) but that's the reason I have never done any magic requiring IT.  I did use a reel for a self-untying knot in silk effect, but the thread could be bright green and it wouldn't really matter.

Most "floating" effects I've seen were (to me) not magical in the slightest.
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Alan Smithee

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Reply with quote  #4 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RayJ

Most "floating" effects I've seen were (to me) not magical in the slightest.


Same here and, treading boldly, include Copperfield's "Flying" and Blackstone's "Bulb".

As for risks in general, daring to do a trick is a risk. I don't get nervous about it, but I'm always aware that, being a trick, something can happen. 

Murphy's Law and all that.
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John Cowne

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Reply with quote  #5 
I’ve used loops occasionally, similar to Mike’s recounting. Or it’s been an unannounced, apparently extemporary effect not related to any formal routine. And I do have a small box of IT stuff (including unravelled wife’s old black stockings!) that I have played around with, but never had the nerve to publicly use. I like Ray’s use of “risk aversion” because it puts the issue into a calculated pro/con, cost/benefit category rather than I’m perhaps too timid to take a reasonable risk, which I think may be my default problem. I have found I’m often in ‘too good’ a lighting situation with an audience of too young visual acuity to ever feel comfortable trying it out. The times I have dug up the courage to try it is when I’ve got a fresh loop on my wrist and we’re wandering around and there’s a ‘sweet spot’ of shadow to take advantage of a quick small object levitation. So far, sticking to this, I’ve never never been ‘caught’. But I use it very rarely, and let the single experience linger in the spectators’ memory, fed by their imagination to make it a greater story than it originally was. Thinking over this, it’s really a case study in the pragmatics of ‘the magician’s code’.
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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #6 
I did float a Wunderbar for a couple of my colleagues years ago. They were blown away. Dushek had some cool moves and a way to use a metal ring to "prove" that there were no wires. 

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GregB

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Reply with quote  #7 
I've tried some different things with IT in the past but have never practiced it enough to really feel comfortable performing it for others. However, on my list of tricks to really work on is MoneyMorphosis https://www.vanishingincmagic.com/close-up-magic/moneymorphosis/
To me, it is a beautiful trick that is very magical, and just so much fun to watch happen.
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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #8 
Andrew Dakota had a version of the self folding bill that was very cool. That sort of use of IT pretty much eliminates the worries about visibility.

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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #9 
Many here on the forum may not have heard of Magic Christian.  He took first prize at FISM in 1973, 76 and 79 in the manipulation category.  

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magic_Christian_(magician)

I remember reading that he might have won more championships, but he tended to do "risky" things which sometimes failed, causing the magic to suffer.  Christian was a great inventor as well as a manipulator and some of the gimmicks and props he came up with were remarkable.  But some were prone to occasional mishap.  It is fair to say he was not "risk-adverse".  And when everything worked to his advantage it was a wonderful thing.

In addition to other things he published, Magic Christian wrote an entire book on one move, The Top Change.  It received rave reviews from folks like Michael Weber, Allan Ackerman and Roberto Giobbi.

Here's something I found online.  

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Alan Smithee

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Reply with quote  #10 
I may well be misremembering, I do that a lot these days, but didn't Magic Christian have a line of playing cards, fake and regular, manufactured by Piatnik?
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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #11 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan Smithee
I may well be misremembering, I do that a lot these days, but didn't Magic Christian have a line of playing cards, fake and regular, manufactured by Piatnik?


Yes, he was a "brand ambassador" for Piatnik and worked with them to create cards for the magic community.  I own a pack of his personal cards, they were actually used by him and gifted to a magician who in turn gifted them to me.  I'll dig them out and post a photo of them.  They are blue and they say 'The Magic of Christian' on the back.  They have a smooth finish, something I don't prefer, but the quality is exceptional and I adore the joker design.

Here is some advertising that features him.

Count Down (Mark Leveridge) | Winkler's Magic Warehouse
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GregB

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Reply with quote  #12 
That was a neat performance, I have never been able to flick a card into the air from the side of the deck like he does. I have a routine I'm coming up with that I think that flourish would come in really handy, does anyone have a resource on where to learn that? For more context, Christian starts doing it at the 1 minute mark
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chris w

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Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregB
That was a neat performance, I have never been able to flick a card into the air from the side of the deck like he does. I have a routine I'm coming up with that I think that flourish would come in really handy, does anyone have a resource on where to learn that? For more context, Christian starts doing it at the 1 minute mark


It looks like Audley Walsh's long distance spinner. Do you have Tarbell? It's in Volume 4.
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Socrates

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Reply with quote  #14 
My approach is not so much about taking risks but more about capitalising on opportunities... in some ways it is like one of those 'choose your own adventure' type of books kids had back in the 80s, well that was I first saw them - there are multiple paths which an effect can take but in the end it always finishes perfectly.

There is no risk when all eventualities are planned for, it just allows more fluidity and fun for me whilst I am playing with card magic.
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Paco Nagata

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Reply with quote  #15 
I reckon that everything has a certain degree of risk.
However, the most we practise the less risk.
The better we organise ourselves (our shows) the less risk.
The more experience in general we get, the less risk.
The more "plan B" we have got, the less risk.
So, I would recommend specially for beginners not to risk much as we practise and get experience in general.

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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #16 
Go ahead and go for that "high risk" force.  But should it fail, always have an invisible deck handy.
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GregB

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Reply with quote  #17 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RayJ
Go ahead and go for that "high risk" force.  But should it fail, always have an invisible deck handy.


Man, the classic force is just so fooling its amazing. I have been trying to work on coming up with routines I can plan on doing should I miss the force, but boy I don't think any force quite matches up to it.
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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #18 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GregB


Man, the classic force is just so fooling its amazing. I have been trying to work on coming up with routines I can plan on doing should I miss the force, but boy I don't think any force quite matches up to it.


Yes, it is an awesome move.  I wasn't referring to the Classic Force when I wrote that, I was simply meaning to communicate any force that isn't 100% surefire.  
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GregB

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Reply with quote  #19 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RayJ


Yes, it is an awesome move.  I wasn't referring to the Classic Force when I wrote that, I was simply meaning to communicate any force that isn't 100% surefire.  


Haha well to me it is the most high risk force I've ever tried, and actually the only force I know of that isn't 100% surefire. But man it's a rush when you get it
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Socrates

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Reply with quote  #20 
Psychological forces of cards are the most difficult, and require the most flexibility and if they fail you can always use the classic force - and I encourage you all to check out Dani Daortiz for a surefire approach to the classic force, that guy is a genius with psychological timing forces [thumb]
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