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Topic: New Magic Coloring Book
Message: Posted by: w_s_anderson (Jul 2, 2010 03:49PM)
Good afternoon all,

I had a question about the magic coloring book routine. Is that a public domain trick or does someone own the rights to it. When I was in Iraq I wrote a patriotic themed magic show for schools and libaries. I used to use the coloring book trick when I did kid shows. Now I have made my own book with a whole patriotic theme to it and it has been a huge hit. I have had some requests to make others, but I do not want to infringe on the intellectual rights if this is not a public domain trick. Thank you very much for any who can help answer.

Wm. Scott Anderson
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Jul 2, 2010 04:03PM)
Hey Scott. There have been so many versions of it and a lot of people make their own (Bob K does that, themed for shows). The effect itself, I know, is over 80 years old at least, the method, and someone just applied that principle to a coloring book at least 40 to 50 years ago. I don't think you'll have a problem if you go with your own thing. Based on age I would think it is public domain.
Message: Posted by: Spellbinder (Jul 2, 2010 06:28PM)
It's a wee bit older than you imagine: In Reginald Scot's 1584 "Discoverie of Witchcraft," Scot attributes the principle of the coloring book to a magician known only as Clarvis.
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Jul 2, 2010 06:48PM)
Scott, if you made a coloring book that was an exact duplicate of the ones currently for sale, then it would be considered a copyright violation. However, since you're using a 400-year-old principle with your own artwork, you're creating a new version (that you control). The principle itself is so old it is public domain.

So go ahead and make your version, you are not infringing on anyone's rights. If it gets a good reception from other performers, you might consider offering it to the magic community in general - it sounds great!

Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Jul 2, 2010 07:30PM)
That's right, I learned it as a stamp book routine and have used the same principle in a reading program routine.