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Profile of Banester
I don't agree with that Idotrix. They both have to be top notch. While Thomas may have been blunt, his observations and corrections were right on. Panels are used over and over again in numerous illusions.

Thanks for giving your 2 cents Thomas.
The art of a magician is to create wonder.
If we live with a sense of wonder, our lives
become filled with joy
-Doug Henning-
Thomas Wayne
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Profile of Thomas Wayne
"IDIOTRIX" reaction is typical of someone who probably never looked beyond the simplest veneer of an effect to try to understand what makes it deceptive and how (if at all) it can be improved.

In Jim Steinmeyer's writings he speaks about the inherent flaw or "loophole" in an illusion that allows the elephant to slip away without being seen (so to speak). He encourages us to embrace those flaws and find ways to work around them, because they aren't going anywhere. In the Wakeling Sawing the giant flaw is the size of the boxes. This aspect can't be changed or the trick won't work, but it must be disguised or the trick won't fool. The perfect (or at least pretty good) disguise here is camouflage - breaking up the broad surfaces with different levels, colors and other distracting lines (wide leather belts of contrasting color, for example).

Even the swords serve an important purpose - beyond supporting the "torture" aspect of this illusion. The blades, as detailed by Steinmeyer, are 32 inches long. The boxes and table combined are 15-1/4" thick, allowing more that half the blade to protrude out the bottom - note also that the blade drops well below the leg stringers. This all serves to reduce the apparent height of the boxes, and that is NOT an accident.

In fact, nothing about about the Wakeling Sawing is accidental. According to Steinmeyer, Alan Wakeling put a year (or better) of thought and design into the illusion before presenting it to the public. He knew that the appearance of frame-and-panel construction was important and Jim Steinmeyer knows it's important. The real question is, why don't you know it's important?

Here, in "Reader's Digest form" are a few the major errors in your modified Wakeling Sawing:

1) Monolithic structure and monotone coloration of the boxes
2) Narrow, non-contrasting color for the hold-down straps
3) No definition or distinction at the edges of the doors
4) Legs that appear to be too short, accentuating the height of the boxes
5) Lack of stringers between the legs

If that seems too harsh then just ignore it. As many, many magicians have proven over the years, you'll be able to find someone to fool with just about any prop, even if it's only yourself.

Thomas Wayne
(PS: In the Steinmeyer book, on the page immediately preceding the Wakeling Sawing chapter (page 251), there is a photo of Alan performing a traditional thin-model sawing; note carefully the paint scheme on that prop, which utilizes nearly ALL of the principles I've explained above. None of this should be news to you guys, and it's a shame that it is.)

I am attaching a link to a composite image I built in Photoshop. It directly compares "magicjohn2278's" version to the Wellington version, and it should be noted that I am using both images reasonably and legally under the "Fair Use Doctrine" of U.S. copyright law:

Compared Wakeling versions
MOST magicians: "Here's a quarter, it's gone, you're an idiot, it's back, you're a jerk, show's over." Jerry Seinfeld
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Profile of rtgreen
On 2008-12-23 12:28, IDOTRIX wrote:
It's about his attitude. the illusion doesn"t make the performer, the performer makes the illusion.

This has been bugging me for the last few days because just before this was posted I read something about this very thought. I just found it again. It is from Darwin Ortiz's Designing Miracles:

"According to one school of thought, everything that makes a trick effective is added after the fact: misdirection, presentation, etc. This philosophy has produced cliches like, 'A great magician can make a miracle out of anything,' and, 'There are no bad tricks, only bad magaicians.'

"Compare this to other fields. Would an actor say, 'I don't care whether the part is well written or whether the play is any good. My talent will make it work.' Would a stand-up comic say, 'Who needs strong material? I'll just buy an old joke book. My delivery will make it funny.' On the contrary, actors will kill for the right part. The best comics sweat blood to develop strong material and usually find it an extremely slow process. Top film directors look for great scripts to direct. They don't say, 'There are no bad scripts, only bad directors.' In fact, in the film industry they have the opposite saying: 'If it ain't on the page, it ain't on the stage.' In other words the script has to have the potential for greatness before even the best director can bring it out."

Just something to think about . . .

Dave Dorsett
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Profile of Dave Dorsett
To magicjohn- Thomas Wayne may be a bit brusque in his estimation but his experiences are spot-on. I have built several Wakelings and without a difference in colors at the least and maybe woods at best, it is difficult (if not impossible) to make the illusion do what we're asking it to do.

Thomas' side-by-side comparison is all the proof you should need. I have looked at photos of early pieces I made and recognize that I was seeing the piece through pride colored glasses. There's nothing wrong with stepping forward and getting started. Not eventually recognizing your mistakes on early works and building on them is wrong
Dave Dorsett
Douglas~Wayne Illusioneering
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Profile of Stanyon
Hopefully everyone that had questions watched MOI tonight and saw(sic) what the "Wakeling Sawing" is supposed to look like and how it was performed. Mark Kalin and Jinger did an exemplary job...as well as Mark's performance of the "Benson/Wakeling Billiard Ball Routine".

aka Steve Taylor

"Every move a move!"

"If you've enjoyed my performance half as much as I've enjoyed performing for you, then you've enjoyed it twice as much as me!"
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