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JoeJoe
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Ado - you are not paying attention! You need to go back, and re-read everything I've said. The kid *IS* the show - not the cups-and-the balls. That is what people REALLY want to see. Themselves, not me.

And it takes more than 1-second to get a name - this is how I can tell you don't work for actual people, at least not on a large scale basis. I don't perform for tables of 4 at the restaurant, I'm standing in front of 100 people. When I say "kid", the kid doesn't know which kid I am referring to (crowd mentality), so it takes him at least 1-second just to look around to make sure I'm talking to him. And when he does answer, he most likely will be talking in a soft voice that not everyone can hear, so whatever he says I have to repeat in a louder voice. It takes a bare minimum of 10 seconds to get a name correctly (not repeating his name is not only incorrect, is is also a violation of Harry Loraine's memory techniques to ensure I won't forget his name, which always kills the tip).

20 seconds is a typical time frame. "What's your name kid ... me? yeah you - what's you name? george ... GEORGE ... that's correct, I was just testing to see if he knew." - it actually goes on for longer, because I rarely load the lemon on the first kid. I'll target a second one and do the dirty work there.



I don't think you could stash lemons on a stick, it would break the skin and juice would pour out all over everything. But it is along the lines of what I'm looking for here - ideas and suggestions. My thought is some type of bottom side pocket on the front that have a secret button to open; put the lemon over the pocket, hit the button, the pocket opens, lemon falls into cup, pocket closes. Not sure how practical that is, but does sound clean. Smile



-JoeJoe
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
kenodad
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"I didn't post this to find out if it sucks or not - I already know it does not. I filmed it looking for ways to make it better ... throwing it away it NOT an option."

Unfortunately, perhaps "throwing it away" may be the only way to "make it better."

You seem to be relying a lot on crowd mentality, which certainly may be helpful, but just for one more opinion: The loads appear clumsy and contrived without adequate motivation. The second video is an improvement, but there is no reason for your right hand to hang on the pouch for so long. There is no reason for you to turn away from the spectators for so long (plus it is bad stage manners) These may seem unimportant to you and ignored consciously by spectators, but unconsciously, something is wrong and (intelligent) spectators pick up on it, and certainly other magicians. The suggestions here have been about improving technique and method; you merely want to improve the misdirection (yell louder or point somewhere else). Ignoring the former completely and relying on the latter is imbalanced. Expect harsh criticism here, take it for what its worth and improve.

But for what it is worth, just wearing the pouch is conspicuously abnormal to me. It just screams "I've got stuff here you are not allowed to see!" Why we seem to accept that is beyond me. It seems much more natural to have a bag hung on the back edge of your performing table; that is where you store your magic stuff, instead of an apron...yes you buskers, it looks like you are wearing an apron.

Ok, enough of my ranting, proceed. All the best to all.
JoeJoe
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What lemon? There is no lemon. The lemon doesn't exist! Your entire load logic is based on your fear of getting caught.

True story ... I'm doing an afternoon show for about a dozen or so people. I had loaded two lemons and was working on the 3rd when this kid points at me and screams as loud as he can "I SAW THAT" and everyone starts laughing at me. I can tell most of you would have froze on the spot, but I didn't miss a beat. I put my knuckles on the table and I look down at the kid and say "what do you think you saw?". "I saw you put a ball under that cup". "That's impossible kid - there is a lemon under the cup - can't fit a ball and a lemon under the same cup!".

His eyes popped out of his head, his jaw dropped, and the entire audiences gasps. Turned a mediocre show into a $50 hat - all because I knew there was no way that kid saw a lemon in my hand. Even if he sees a flash of yellow, he doesn't know it is a lemon! He is looking for a ball! The lemon doesn't exist! A load does not have to be quick and fast for fear of being caught, it can very much be slow and deliberate.

You should re-read all this, it is valuable!



I have loaded from my pockets and I have loaded from my table ... and I much prefer my "pouch palm" method for three very good reasons:

(1) Kids can't see what is on a taller table top - that means dad has to lift them up, something he is not going to want to do (he'll walk first). If you look at the clip from the magic theater, you will notice that people are sitting down. I don't want them looking "up" at the table! I want them looking "down" where they can see everything better. This is basic Magic 101 - lines of sight! For a "close-up" performer, taller table = less money.

(2) When I loaded from the table, everyone behind me could catch me. Not just a flash of yellow between the fingers, they could see the entire lemon. I switched to Michael Ammar's pocket method, which I found to flash the entire right side of the audience. The pouch palm eliminates these problem areas - there is a reason us street performers use the pouch.

(3) I can load larger lemons with my "pouch palm" method, larger lemons = larger tips. With my new pouch, I will be able to do that routine completely surrounded and not flash in any direction with lemons larger than anything I've ever been able to use before.



If I was a hunter, I'd wear a poacher's pouch to put the game I kill in. If I was a carpenter, I would wear a tool pouch to hold my nails and hammer. If I was a welder, I'd wear an apron to protect me from the heat. I was required to wear an apron everyday I worked at the carnival. An "apron" is NOT something a girl wears in the kitchen! Would you question the masculinity of a man wearing an apron at the slaughter house? It's not the 1950's bro, grow up already.

You seem to think it's sole purpose is to hide lemons - NO! The real reason for this pouch - much like the above examples - is to tell people that I am "working". It is my "bag of tricks". Ever see Felix the Cat? The "bag of tricks" is a staple of magic you are ignoring. Yes, people want to know what is inside it - I'm banking on that. I pull cards from it, silks from it, pencils and pens from it, not just lemons - EVERYTHING comes out of that pouch. That pouch is a sign that reads "I'm not a tourist - I'm working here". My mindset right now is "what else can I pull from that pouch? What kind of large object can be pulled from it?". I'm not trying to hide my pouch, I'm trying to highlight it.



And I'm not ignoring anything here ... I'm simply pointing out that there has been nothing posted here that I myself don't already know and haven't already considered. Some of the criticisms here are simply put dead wrong. Most of the meritable stuff posted I had already pointed out in my initial post.

I do very much appreciate that people are taking the time to leave feedback - I just think there are a lot of aspects to this that are not fully understood. If I didn't appreciate it, I would just ignore you and not try to explain. Performing on a boardwalk is nothing like performing on the stage. The things you do will not work for me, nor will the things I do work for you. Neither one of us are "right" or "wrong" here.



-JoeJoe
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
kenodad
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" I put my knuckles on the table and I look down at the kid and say "what do you think you saw?". "I saw you put a ball under that cup". "That's impossible kid - there is a lemon under the cup - can't fit a ball and a lemon under the same cup!". "

He saw you load the cup..He just couldn't tell with what. You don't think he and every thinking audience member won't back track and put it together? You have surprised them, not fooled them in any meaningful way.

I am not sure I buy that "bigger lemons means bigger tips." Wouldn't better magic mean better tips? Or, maybe better entertainment means bigger tips? In any case, I would argue that a small ball appearing out of nowhere would be more magical, entertaining, and tip generating, than a large lemon easily backtracked to its origin.

The uses of the "aprons" you described are all functional. Before the housewife greets someone, she takes the apron off. Why? Because it looks a bit unsightly; it interferes with the rest of her outfit. Magic is entertainment, which is performance, which translates into visual aesthetics. The tourist walking around with a giant fanny pack is well-prepared,...but looks ridiculous. You want your pouch to make you look like you are working..which you are..but you still look ridiculous. But maybe looking ridiculous is something to pursue; ie an outfit that incorporates the pouch...that would be an improvement.

I do agree that street work is different than stage work. I truly applaud you for doing it.
JoeJoe
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Yes, he was very much fooled - that's why his jaw dropped and his eyes popped (I know when someone is fooled). It's not much different than any other sucker trick where people "think" they caught you. You give these people way too much credit.

I once had a guy approach after a show and ask if he could touch the lemon. I said sure. He picked it up, squeezed it, and looked at me and said "well I saw you put that ball under the cup, but I have no idea how you got the lemon there". Truth is I never put a ball under the cup ... he saw me put the lemon under the cup. But he didn't know that, like I said ... the lemon doesn't exist! In his mind, there is no lemon.

That is the worst case scenario right there - people will assume they caught you putting the ball back under the cup. And those people still get fooled, so that becomes irrelevant.

The lemon is just too big for me to palm, in his mind there is no way I concealed that lemon with my hand. Everyone in my crowd can walk up and see that for themselves.

I'm not even going to continue addressing these continued homophobic remarks, they are insulting to real men everywhere. If you think I look 'ridiculous', then you should see some of the clowns I have to work with.

-JoeJoe
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kenodad
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"homophobic remarks, they are insulting to real men everywhere"

Huh? That is not even a response. Are you saying real men wear aprons? Or the "utility belts" that real men wear are acceptable for male entertainers? Not sure how you are getting homophobic out of this. I am arguing that aprons (or utility belts, if you prefer) look unsightly and suspicious on an entertainer. Shoot, Batman has a utility belt, and I think he is cool. But that is my point...if the belt/apron fits the costume, it works, otherwise it is out of place. You seem to want to argue that the apron/utility belt is acceptable for a street performer/busker. Just say that, instead of calling me a homophobe. But when I see a guy in public wearing a thing around his waist that looks to be vinyl with big stars on it, I don't think Batman utility belt; I think housewife with apron.

"well I saw you put that ball under the cup,.." Not the magic I am going for. If ONE spectator saw THAT, how many saw the lemon load and just won't tell you? Those that weren't fooled are not going to give you comments (usually). Isn't that why you posted the video here...so that you could get more objective input? Certainly, here you will get overly nit picky observations, but the trend has been that the technique and method need work. The suggestions here are about improving technique and method so neither the ball or the lemon can be seen loaded. You are reacting like your bubble has been burst a bit, which is what it takes to improve. In your mind, you seem to have a good thing going ( "Yes, he was very much fooled - that's why his jaw dropped and his eyes popped (I know when someone is fooled)." ). Good for you. You are set, and I am sure you will fool some people and entertain many. All the best.
JoeJoe
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Quote:
On Apr 24, 2014, kenodad wrote:
Are you saying real men wear aprons? Or the "utility belts" that real men wear are acceptable for male entertainers? Not sure how you are getting homophobic out of this.


When you make comments that I look ridiculous and compare it to a housewife with an apron, it makes you sound homophobic. Some magicians seem to believe that we should all be dressed like Lance Burton; I would fail miserably if I even tried to dress like that.

The actual look I am aiming for is a more colorful Mickey Mouse in Sorcerer's Apprentice. It works because my primary audience is 5-6-7 years old (it is very rare for there not to be at least one child of that age in my crowd).



Quote:
On Apr 24, 2014, kenodad wrote:
If ONE spectator saw THAT, how many saw the lemon load and just won't tell you? Those that weren't fooled are not going to give you comments (usually).


I'll tell you what someone that isn't fooled is not going to give me ... MONEY! I've done this long enough to know this to be fact.

You can cite all the theory you want, I already know better. This isn't my first circus. I've had hundred dollar bills dropped on me, I've watched entire audiences walk-away laughing at me. If people catch me loading lemons, they do not tip me - nobody has to say anything to me for me to know. They might feel sorry for me and give me a dollar, but they're not dropping a $5 or $10. You can just trust me on this one, it is proven fact. I know when I suck.



Quote:
Isn't that why you posted the video here...so that you could get more objective input? Certainly, here you will get overly nit picky observations, but the trend has been that the technique and method need work. The suggestions here are about improving technique and method so neither the ball or the lemon can be seen loaded. You are reacting like your bubble has been burst a bit


No. The purpose of this video was for me to determine if my "flash background" concept works. I'll try to explain since it apparently isn't as obvious as I thought it would be.

I was having a bad night, my timing was off and I knew I was flashing left and right. But the big tips kept falling into the hat like magic. I knew that shouldn't be happening and couldn't stop trying to figure out why. I finally did. I was wearing a yellow shirt. If people saw a flash of the lemon, the brain just assumed it was the shirt. It ignored the flash of yellow completely. This is when I realized "the lemon doesn't exist - there is no lemon".

The human brain cannot process all of the information it receives. We don't have enough computing power. Think about how many details you ignore while driving down the road. I mean ... do you read each and every number on each and every mailbox? No! Why not ... the eye ball saw those numbers. But the brain just ignored them completely. The brain is constantly trying to determine what is important and everything else gets ignored. This isn't some cockamamie idea of mine, this is proven science - you can find peer reviewed studies on this.

If people see a flash of yellow against a black pouch, the mind will wonder what that was. But if people see a flash of yellow against a yellow pouch, they will simply ignore it. I believe the less yellow I'm wearing the more powerful this concept, thus much of my design work has gone into figuring out exactly where to place yellow for maximum impact.



Now how would I know if this works if I did not flash? A 100% technically correct performance would be of little value to me here, I need to see what this will look like when I am sloppy - not during perfection. That is why I pointed out that I flashed in my initial post, if I wanted to show you a revolutionary super clean loading method, I would have re-filmed that to eliminate the flashing.

Because I will be sloppy this summer, it is inevitable. I'm going to be doing cups and balls 10-20 times a day for 90 some straight days in 100+ degree heat. Maybe I've got a headache, maybe I'm hungover, might fracture my foot again, might get in a fight with my girlfriend. There will be at least 6-9 days this summer when I will not be able to find lemons small enough to palm, and I will get caught no matter how good I am. I can't just take the night off, I'm contracted. The show much go on no matter how bad it is going to be.

So the purpose of this video was to determine if the flash background helps minimize flashing to any measurable degree. I believe it does. When you put it into it's proper context, you realize this pouch is brilliant.



-JoeJoe
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
JoeJoe
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Latest rehearsal video ... sorry for the audio feedback, too hot to turn the A/C off:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lTEgl2l_bRI&



-JoeJoe
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magicwatcher2005
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I wonder if you realize that the yellow colored patches on the pouch no longer have anything to do with the load sequence (finally)? Not only would the pouch probably look much better if it was all black, but the lemons could just as easily be neon red - completely negating the "awesome" idea of trying to camouflage the lemons with a partially yellow bag.

So much for that breakthrough idea.
JoeJoe
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How do you figure? You must not have caught me palming a lemon against the yellow background at 1:40. [proud look] It is the exact same load I do in the first video, only with less fumbling now that I've had practice.

And as I already pointed out earlier, the "breakthrough idea" has less to do with the loading sequence and more to with hiding the lemons BEFORE I do the trick. When a man is standing two feet next to you, if he looks down he will see the lemons in the pouch. What you can't see in this video is the fact that the lemons are "invisible" while inside the pouch, you can look down into the pouch and it will look empty. That is why it is called the "Invisible Lemon Pouch".

If you can find a clip of Gazzo doing cups, you might notice he is not wearing his pouch during his build ... he then puts it on before he does the cups. I'm not going to pretend to be able to read his mind, but it is my theory he doesn't wear the pouch in part because he knows if he walks out into the audience people will be able to look down and see the fruit inside the pouch.

That is a huge problem for me when trying to do cups "close-up", I've had many people ask me "what are those lemons for" "what are you going to do with those lemons" "what trick is that lemon for" ... can't magically produce lemons if they know they are in the pouch before I even start. So this pouch solves that problem.

And it is working very nicely for me. The biggest problems have to do with pockets and stitching - I used a straight stitch for the stars and they are fraying and coming off. Should have used a zig-zag stitch, still learning the sewing machine. Smile

-JoeJoe
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JoeJoe
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Live footage from Barefoot Landing today ... shot from three different angles ... no clue what you guys are talking about, those loads are flawless:





I shouldn't be wearing a white shirt as it makes it harder to see the balls fall into the pouch, but I knew it was going to be a slow day and due to laundry constraints I'd just assume dirty a white short on a slow day. Smile

-JoeJoe
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David French
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Hi Joe Joe -

You have certainly put a lot of work and thought into your routine. I am curiuos if you are using real lemons or faux? Curious your thoughts on this please.

thanks,

David
JoeJoe
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I use real lemons. When I first added cups to my rotation, I started with faux lemons because I didn't want the upkeep of buying fresh lemons.

I quickly decided the upkeep was worth it, because kids do come up and pick-up the lemons.

I would like to one day switch to tennis balls simply to avoid having to find the right size lemons every week. I'm not sure what the psychological change would be to the effect, lemons provide some sort of comic relief as they are just so unexpected. Plus I haven't been able to find tennis balls that fit into my cups.



-JoeJoe
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JoeJoe
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Here is a clip shot tonight, well worth watching just to check out my new most awesome magic wand!

Loads have been fine tuned and smoothed out, I like that the cups never enter the pouch or go out-of-sight under a table. Overall you'll find these to be very clean loads. Smile

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fcyPk3vx4Xc

-JoeJoe
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BeThePlunk
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Two reactions: 1) I find your long backward step as you prep the load very suspicious looking. Maybe laymen stay focused on your table, but it's such an exaggerated motion, I think some people might wonder what you're up to. (2) Have you considered using a taller table? Your bag would be less in view and you might be able to do more moves more easily. I'd check out Gazzo for table height. Just a Café members thoughts. Good luck.
JoeJoe
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Looking at the latest clip, I don't see any "long backward step". My knee is at the table at all times. If you are referring to how I turn my body, laymen don't see anything suspicious about that what-so-ever. It may appear "exaggerated" on a 4 inch YouTube screen, but in person it is a perfectly normal and natural.

I may step back depending on the size of the crowd, the larger the crowd the larger my motions must be as the larger my motions the larger their reactions - it has nothing to do with needing to conceal the load prep.

As for the height of the table, I have not only considered a taller table I used to use one ... and then made this one shorter so it would work better. I already explained this.

Gazzo is doing circle shows - people are standing 10 15 even 20 feet away from him. A three foot tall kid can see the top of a four foot tall table when standing 20 feet away. He cannot however see the top when he is standing directly in front of a table one foot taller than he is. Called "lines of sight".


-JoeJoe
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JoeJoe
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And laymen don't "wonder what I am up to" - re-read what I posted about "there is no lemon - the lemon doesn't exist". The only reason anything about that routine looks suspicious to you is because you know I am going to load the lemons.

That is why I removed one of the lemons from the routine so I wouldn't have to load any after the lemon does exist.

-JoeJoe
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BeThePlunk
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I appreciate how much careful thought you've given your work, and I'm glad you're finding so much success with it. I admire you buskers. I don't yet the brass to do what you guys do.
JoeJoe
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Busking is not hard, you just have to go out there and do it. Watch my Crowd Goes Wild video series and I'll teach you how it's done. I've pretty much turned it into a scientific formula that makes it easy for nearly anyone to go out and do.

Also ... on the long backward step ... watch the live performance starting at 3:09 and you will notice when I do that I engage a person ("Mary") on my right by saying "see the white ball"; thus the move is very natural as it appears I am turned to show the ball to the person I am talking to. I then rotate to show it to the rest of the audience. Nothing suspicious about it, especially after I've done the same thing several times with previous tricks.

The more people watching, the easier it is to perform cups-n-balls. I know that sounds counter intuitive, but it's true. I was unable to perform this routine on this pitch before I had that pouch, loading lemons close-up is hard.

-JoeJoe
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
kenodad
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"no clue what you guys are talking about, those loads are flawless"

Sounds like a bit of a settled deal for you, despite input from several.

I actually think your performances are entertaining and magical. The rapid vanishes and reproductions are nice. The loading sequences have definitely improved, but they are associated with unmotivated movements. I really like how you take the lemon out early, pause with your hand holding the pouch open to collect a ball (THERE is a motivated action). I think you could slow down after dumping the ball into the pouch (you move very fast to load the lemon and I think a pause and motion to the table first, followed by a more fluid motion by the hand to load the ball would be more natural and deceptive). Or have someone point to a cup or something; that would direct attention to the table, then you could pick up the load with NO heat and at a leisurely pace.

In general: nice. Still don't like the apron, though. Smile
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