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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Somewhat embarrassing question... (3 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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TeddyBoy
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I've avoided asking this, but after a couple of beers, what the heck! I'm having a bit of a motivational crisis so here goes- Do you folks actually like practicing tricks/effects?
So many sleights...so little time.
Cheers,

Ted
kShepher
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Absolutely! It's the process of discovery, and hopefully the satisfaction of mastery. It's one of my most enjoyable pastimes. Have one for me...I am at work -)
Wravyn
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Sometimes yes, sometimes no.
Better have another beer for me too please.
TeddyBoy
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Yikes...I'm in trouble.
So many sleights...so little time.
Cheers,

Ted
danaruns
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No. I don't. I do it because that's the only way to get good, but it's not the enjoyable part of it, for me. I'm all about the performance, the interaction with real people, and the high I get from getting great reactions. Most of my magic is collaborative with the audience, so rehearsing routines at home is very difficult because I can't get the rhythm without anyone to play off of, and my spouse tires of being my audience very quickly. I'd much rather be doing it in front of an audience than awkwardly staggering through it in my studio before a mirror or camera.

But rehearsing tricks and routines is different than practicing sleights and moves. Those I do all the time, just kind of fiddling around wherever I am.

So there's at least one person who feels like you do.
"Dana Douglas is the greatest magician alive. Plus, I'm drunk." -- Foster Brooks
Dick Oslund
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Hey Teddy!

Someone asked Pablo Casals, world class celloist, "Why are you practicing at your age (90)? Pablo responded, "I think I'm getting better!"

I started practicing MAGIC in my teens, over 70 years ago. It paid off! I made my living with magic, and, I was never out of work! (almost 50 years!)

Just remember, You practice sleight so you can perform tricks. If you perform them well, with a good presentation that entertains people, you wil have created a magic effect in the minds of your spectator)s). spectator(s). You can't practice effect! The effect is what the aiduence perceives!!!

I never got interested in doing card tricks! I studied Erdnase as a 14 year old. I learned all of the flourishes, but realized there wouldn't me much future for a teen aged gambler!

I know or have known most of the world famous cardicians. One less with the passing of Johnny Thompson last month. I enjoy(ed) watching them work, but I don't do card tricks!

There are gezilions of card tricks that require only basic moves, or no moves at all. Work on good presentations!

Dick
SNEAKY, UNDERHANDED, DEVIOUS,& SURREPTITIOUS ITINERANT MOUNTEBANK
Ravenspur
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Teddy,

I think I'm close to your age and stage of magical development, and I can say that I find it hard to practice as well. Part of the problem is, I don't have anything specific to practice for. Last night at our S.A.M. Assembly we were talking about the problems of performing for our wives and families. You can only do that so often. It's not that motivating.

It's important to practice, but it's nice to have a reason to do it. I'm thinking of doing a show for a few kids after school, just to get the practice at presentation, but also give myself a reason to practice.
Josh Riel
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I call it magicsturbating... I like performing magic, but I love magic.
I don't do it for money, so that might be the thing. Practicing magic (magicsturbating) for no reason besides my love of magic makes me happy.


And yeah, I like it a lot.
Magic is doing improbable things with odd items that, under normal circumstances, would be unnessecary and quite often undesirable.
funsway
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Years go I quit practicing coin sleights because of arthritic hands. Not so much pain as fear of dropping coins unexpectedly to ruin a presentation.
Discussions with Mb and Tim Feher changed my mind. Forced practiced allowed me to find new moves and sleights that I could do with confidence.

So, I suggests the possibility that the more you reach automaticity from practice, the more your mind will be freed for greater things.
The benefits of rehearsal are different. Here you can have you initial awe&wonder of an effect rekindled by the reaction of others.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst



ShareBooks at www.eversway.com * questions at funsway@eversway.com
bdungey
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It's the creative process I enjoy. The 'work', if you will, of the different hobbies I'm involved in.
davidpaul$
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I perform quite often weekly and get many repeat spectators, so I'm motivated to practice different effects. Like Josh Riel, I too just enjoy it and challenge myself even if it's just for me. It's nice though to have an audience like funsway mentions to experience the reactions.

If you went to the driving range to hit golf balls but never played the game, I'd guess intrest might fade. Then again, for some it might be just plain fun.

I fill lost without a deck of cards within reach no matter where I am.
If you can't help worrying, remember worrying can't help you!
funsway
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Quote:
On Apr 9, 2019, davidpaul$ wrote:
If you went to the driving range to hit golf balls but never played the game, I'd guess interest might fade. Then again, for some it might be just plain fun.


One can delight from using balls fished out of the lake of other people's mistakes and hopes.
With discipline and confidence can come innovation and enhanced spacial awareness useful in many life pursuits.

Many sleights. moves and acquitments come from mistakes or overcoming some difficulty in a unique way.
New routines can be build around a special sleight or handling.

If one views practice as a creative experience rather than a chore magical things can happen. At least the TV is off, right?

I am beginning to think that the greatest value for getting young people into magic at any level is not that it is
"better than" other activities, but "other than" the alternatives. Practice is part of that just because there is no instant gratification and a plan is involved - and is done alone.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst



ShareBooks at www.eversway.com * questions at funsway@eversway.com
Nala Nosmoht
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TeddyBoy
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I really appreciate the responses. Part of the problem is that my "ambition" is really not more than as a hobbyist, therefore I do not have incentives to perfect any tricks or routines as I do not perform. As Ravenspur pointed out, this can be problematic, especially if you superimpose on this scenario a layer of performance anxiety. Therefore, why should I do the Cannibal Cards 20 times in a row...I start to root for the missionaries. Maybe I am just meant to learn how things are done -learning the sleights which I find to be fun and interesting, kind of like Dana stated. Although part of me says "give it up" another part does not want to. If nothing else I have already sunk a couple of thousand bucks into books and DVDS, and some are real classics. I should at least give them a chance to draw me into the idea of performing. Also, I cannot rule out the effects of the age thing - I started this trip down the Royal Road when I entered my 60s. Maybe that's why it is said you cannot teach an old dog new tricks. Wow, it never made sense until now.

Thanks again. Smile
So many sleights...so little time.
Cheers,

Ted
FlightRisk
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Practice can be frustrating. More difficult sleights or remembering a complex sequence happens in "plateaus". You want to kick your practice table over and all of a sudden you get it. Then you get cocky and try some more and you aren't getting anywhere (you riding across a plateau) until the next jump in ability. But I find doing "fidget moves" while doing something else relaxing. I can watch TV or read while coin rolling, palming, card lifts, false shuffles... I feel I am never as good as I want to be, but then maybe I don't practice enough! Smile
TeddyBoy
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Quote:
On Apr 16, 2019, FlightRisk wrote:
Practice can be frustrating. More difficult sleights or remembering a complex sequence happens in "plateaus". You want to kick your practice table over and all of a sudden you get it. Then you get cocky and try some more and you aren't getting anywhere (you riding across a plateau) until the next jump in ability. But I find doing "fidget moves" while doing something else relaxing. I can watch TV or read while coin rolling, palming, card lifts, false shuffles... I feel I am never as good as I want to be, but then maybe I don't practice enough! Smile


Have you been speaking to my wife? Smile Thank you for your thoughts, I feel now that I am not alone. My favorite "fidget move" is practicing my totally visible classic pass in the bathroom mirror where no one can see me. I am currently working through Card College Vol 3, which compared to volumes 1 and 2 is definitely a jump up to graduate school level-very interesting but also extremely challenging. It will probably take me more than one year to get through Vol 3 with a somewhat decent skill level, which in turn leaves me little time to practice (and develop) even a small repertoire of tricks to a level that I dare do to friends, co-workers, etc. I've muffed tricks in front of co-workers and felt like a fool for not being prepared. But the tension between moving ahead in Vol 3 and mastering some tricks/effects makes trying to learn this art incredibly frustrating as I am very eager to complete Card College and move into material I have accumulated by others such as Vernon, LePaul, Marlo, Jennings, Darwin Ortiz, Dingle, Bro. Hamman, Trost and of course, Harry Lorayne.
So many sleights...so little time.
Cheers,

Ted
The Gold Coin
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I really enjoy learning a new routine, especially if there are new slights. Once I can do the routine all the way through, I usually do it another 20-50 times to iron out all the kinks before I actually perform it. That second part is when I definitely have days where I don't even want to look at my Okito box. I've tried getting around this by alternating which routine I'm practicing (e.g. do the coin box routine for a bit, then do the cups and balls for a bit), which seems to help a little bit.
magicianbrady
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I used to love practicing magic. Now I'm more of a mentalist so I mainly keep working on my script and choreography in front of my computer.
judeh
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Thanks for asking this! No! Not at all!

It's like exercising. Does it help? Sure. Does it mean it's enjoyable? Not at all.
Bob G
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Hi TeddyBoy,


I think you and I are at about the same stage in life.


While I understand what Dana is saying (Hi Dana!), she's a professional, whereas you've said that you have no aspirations beyond being a hobbyist. That's the case for me too. I'm a professional mathematician, and I went into the field because I couldn't get enough of math -- I absolutely loved it! -- and still do. I soon discovered, though, that I had many duties as a professor that had nothing to do with my reasons for going into math. And that's okay -- I put up with the boring stuff because I know I'm getting paid in large part to do what I love.


Hobbies are another story, I think. I'd be lost without mine -- piano, magic, poetry-writing (and -publishing, which still feels unreal to me). And it's true that I have occasional frustrations in all of them. But -- and here's my point -- why do something as a hobby if you don't love doing it? I'd love to know Chinese, but I know I'd hate every minute of the actual learning process, so I plan not to learn Chinese! If magic is as frustrating as you say, why not give it up and find another hobby? I don't mean that in a dismissive way -- not at all -- I just think that the point of hobbies is to get absorbed in something that gives purpose to life, and that you like so much that you can't imagine giving it up.


One last thing -- you're talking about working on the Pass. That's a notoriously difficult sleight. if you enjoy working on it, go for it! But if not, there are plenty of much easier sleights that can be used in delightful and mystifying tricks.


Wishing you the best,


Bob
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