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Theodore Lawton
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You should write a book.

Two, actually. One can be a cookbook.

Smile
GS121002
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Quote:
On Oct 24, 2015, Theodore Lawton wrote:
You should write a book.

Two, actually. One can be a cookbook.

Smile


I'll buy the 1st copy!
Gary Salisbury
San Diego, CA

IT'S A FACT! - Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
CREDIS QUOD HABES ET HABES! - What you believe is real, is real!
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Michael Baker
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I was once prodded into writing a book of all my original magic effects. Once I had everything down, I realized I had no idea how to go about getting it published. This was back around 2000, or so. I had been a performer for about 30 years, but I was that cliche big fish in a small pond. Very few people in the magic world knew who I was outside my small circle (that is still the case, really).

So, I sent all that material to Racherbaumer, thinking he might want some of it for a Linking Ring Parade. He took most of it and used it for two Parades, and one of them was awarded best of year or some such thing. So, I have a nice trophy and a dusty feather in my tattered cap. I'm grateful that they liked it, but nothing like that is a train you can ride long at all.

George Ledo and I have kicked around the idea of producing a book that details several small prop projects. I think at this point, the ball is in my court to get some things on paper so George can work his magic and make it look like something. It might find a few readers, but would still just be a DIY kind of guide.

Maybe one day, I'll find the motivation to gather material for a book like the one on Babcock's work, one on Paul Lembo's work and the soon to be released book on Clarence Miller's magic. I have a long way to go to achieve their level of recognition, though. In the meantime, my time is best spent making props to sell. It's how I pay my bills. Smile
~michael baker
The Magic Company
Wizard of Oz
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If that book is published count this guy in. And, I hope there are plenty of full-color photos...your work deserves as much.
Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.
GS121002
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On Oct 5, 2015, Michael Baker wrote:
The finished box. A cheap way to make a period-looking gaffed box. I've had the box for awhile, and probably bought it when they were on sale. The thin plywood likely cost me more than the box did.

Image


For those interested, here is a link to those boxes:
http://www.hobbylobby.com/Home-Decor-%26....../p/40032
You will find them priced individually at the store.

Now not as fancy but better dimensions for a change box is this:
http://www.hobbylobby.com/Home-Decor-%26......8-KU0462

Thank you Michael for the tip on inexpensive finished boxes at Hobby Lobby.

"The Magic Café - Magicians helping magicians."
Gary Salisbury
San Diego, CA

IT'S A FACT! - Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
CREDIS QUOD HABES ET HABES! - What you believe is real, is real!
WHO IS THAT MASKED MAN AND WHAT IS HE ALL ABOUT? - https://www.pinterest.com/garydsalisbury/
Michael Baker
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You're welcome, Gary... and thank you for the link to the other box. I bought my box, as well as a couple others, for the purpose of scavenging the hardware. The decision to make the one into a card box came about only because it filled a quick need and I already had the stuff sitting here.

FYI - Marc Charisse has been making some awesome change boxes from what I am guessing are found (unfinished) boxes, tricking them out, and adding very cool image transfers, both inside and out. He has shown a few here in the Workshop, and also in the Spooky forum. Check them out!

Halloween always brings out the best in magicians! Smile
~michael baker
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gimpy2
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Hey Michael,

I know you love Halloween and collect vintage decorations. Just guessing you have some cool decorations at your house,love to see what you do. First time in 23 years for us to have trick or treaters and a reason to fix the yard up.

Gimpy
Michael Baker
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Hi Gimpy,

This is the first year in quite awhile that I have not had time to do much. I don't often decorate the yard because my collection is mainly indoor stuff (diecuts, noisemakers, and other small things). I've just been caught up with so many other things that I just have not had time. I guess it depends on your point of view, though. My living room has become a staging area for my Halloween shows this year, so there are plenty of spooky props sitting around at the moment! Ha!

No sense putting them away until all that is done. There are giant skeleton puppets, some set decorations, spooky tricks and illusions, etc. Our magic club is producing a Halloween Magic show in the afternoon of the 31st, so I'm not even sure if I'll be back home in time for trick or treaters (I don't get many here anyway).
~michael baker
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Michael Baker
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These guys were made a few years ago, but I still use them, and hey... 'tis the season, eh?

Image

Image

Image


They are rod puppets, each about 5 feet tall. The heads turn side to side and the mouths open/close. Made from hard foam skulls from Party City, wood balls painted for eyes, and lots of junk fastened together.
~michael baker
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gimpy2
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LOVE IT! The one on the right reminds me of Achmed the terrorist. My all time favorite puppet. "I kill U" just kills me.
Michael Baker
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Latest item... actually an item that I've done before, but with a different design.

Okito-style Sleeve Production.

Image

Image
~michael baker
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Julie
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This looks like one of those goodies that is too pretty to actually use.
Excellent, Michael!

Julie
Wizard of Oz
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Michael, your detailing is becoming so well-refined. Nicely done yet again.
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john wills
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So great to see.
Michael Baker
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Thanks everyone! Julie, I'd hope people would actually use these! Thoroughbred horses are beautiful to look at, but they love to run!

Here is a Cabby I just finished...

Image

Image
~michael baker
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Julie
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Collectors are a unique lot, Michael. The good news for you is that one of these kooky kinds of people might buy TWO: one to display and one to actually use.

I remember back when Mel Babcock's beautifully crafted Die Boxes first hit the magic market. Many a performer would order one through the magic shop (he wholesaled in the beginning) and when it was delivered he would immediately order another because he didn't want to take a chance on marring his original.

Such is life in the world of Magic. Smile

Julie
Michael Baker
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Julie, I don't recall experiencing that, but a couple of times I've had customers order two of a particular item, but wanted each to have a different design and color. That happened recently with a couple of Silk Cabbies sent to Italy.

Collectors seem to be particular in their own way. Some will want a variety of items, and like that they have similar colors and decal images, as if they are all part of a set, while others want each piece to look radically different from the next, even completely unrelated props.

Mel Babcock still wholesales a couple of items I think, because Stevens Magic occasionally has some of his pieces in stock, most recently a beautiful Die Box. (That was redundant, because ALL of Mr. Babcock's Die Boxes are GORGEOUS!)
~michael baker
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Michael Baker
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Just finished this. It is a Slow-Rising Die to Hat, based on a Thayer item from many years ago. The die is placed into the cabinet and the front opened so it may be seen throughout. A hat is set atop the cabinet and the die slowly rises, apparently penetrating both the cabinet and the hat to end up inside the hat.

This differs from the Phantom Die (Thayer and Owen), or Loyd's Jewel Chest of Ching See. Those others supposedly cause the die to instantly vanish from the cabinet (when in fact you actually see it rise, just really fast). I prefer this version for it's visual nature, which is kind of creepy to witness!

I will be making 5 total on this run.

Image

Image
~michael baker
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Wizard of Oz
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You are on a roll Michael.

Is the Cabby gimmick on a hinge?
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Michael Baker
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Quote:
On Nov 17, 2015, Wizard of Oz wrote:


Is the Cabby gimmick on a hinge?


Pivot pins through the ends. These also have tiny bushings that make the action super smooth and very quiet.
~michael baker
The Magic Company
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