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 Post subject: help with getting started
PostPosted: Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:41 pm 
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i'm not a complete noob, i've been doing magic for a while now but mentalism has always been something i've wanted to get into. i got some adice a couple months ago to read 13 steps to mentalism .... so i did. now I know alot of the core ideas and moves but the book didn't have many tricks that were practical for me. Don't get me wrong i loved the book but it concentrated more on stage effects which i'm far away form. so i'm wondering what i should do now. i think i need some solid routines at this point. I'm thinking i should get another book because i believe more in books than dvds (my preference) so im thinking maybe prism? or practical mental magic. any advice would be greatly appreciated thank you!


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 19, 2008 4:16 pm 
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Practical Mental Magic is another good starter source. With that knowledge, as well as the 13 steps (which you should be able to incorporate into close-up magic), you have a great foundation.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 19, 2008 5:17 pm 
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Corinda and Annemann will give you great techniques to start with,
here is an example of a routine out of Annemann.

http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.individual&VideoID=2159070


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2009 7:42 pm 
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For me the cornerstones of mentalism in book form are Practical Mental Magic, 13 Steps and Prism.

Having said this, unlike magic, in my opinion, mentalism really needs a good storyline beyond ordinary patter to build it up, make it believable and to deliver a punch. The core effects and what I might call sample presentations in these books can be scripted into your own story (routine) and can reflect the paranormal, occult or simply bizarre magic. I have accomplished multiple mentalism effects (different story lines) using only equivoque, the classic out-to-lunch method and a center tear. The rest is simply building a great story. Unlike traditional magic, less props and more imagination are critical elements in mentalism.

Storylines don't have to be long, just able enough to hit 'em when they least expect it!


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2009 10:19 am 
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I also recommend "Prism" by Maven. If you are new you could start out with Osterlind's Easy To Master Mental Miracles, then work you way through the rest of his sets. I also love the Desert Brainstorm set. Hemispheres by Sankey is also a good DVD, and The Mind, Myth, and Magick is a fantastic huge book on the subject

Much of Osterlind's material is a great act for parlor, and Max Maven's Video Mind series has parlor mentalism on them as well. So basically it is all a matter of preference, find out what effects you want to do and then master the presentation.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2009 2:42 pm 
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born to perform.

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sirbrad wrote:
I also recommend "Prism" by Maven. If you are new you could start out with Osterlind's Easy To Master Mental Miracles, then work you way through the rest of his sets. I also love the Desert Brainstorm set. Hemispheres by Sankey is also a good DVD, and The Mind, Myth, and Magick is a fantastic huge book on the subject

Much of Osterlind's material is a great act for parlor, and Max Maven's Video Mind series has parlor mentalism on them as well. So basically it is all a matter of preference, find out what effects you want to do and then master the presentation.


I second all of this, sirbrad really knows what he is talking about, listen to the man!


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 Post subject: In the same boat...
PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2009 12:02 pm 
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I set out this morning to start a discussion that turns out to have already been started by bwa1265.

I read 13 steps. Great material. But I am having difficulty applying it to the type of effects that I like to perform.

When I learned card magic, I used Royal Road. I found the sleights to be incredible building blocks. I tend use the sleights and controls to work "simple magic". Not a fancy story, not a lot of motion, (not behind the back, nor "do exactly what I tell you do do with the cards", etc) but instead, what I would do if I really were magic. (Example: Unprepared deck, classic force, no shuffle / don't take back the card, dramatic reveal.) (Example 2: Show bottom card, confirming it is not their's, use glide, now you have a great transformation.) (Example 3: Invisble deck) (Example 4: Out of this world) (Example 5: Palm their card off of the deck. Now do something amazing.)

I am looking for effects that parallel this approach (at least in how they appear to the audience) like Osterlind's Radar Deck or Banachek's effect where the word that you thoguht of is written by a pen under a hanky (I do not like the pen under the hanky part. I don't know the method, so I don't even know if that is part important to producing the effect. I like the think of a word, here it is. Next...)

So, I am not looking for material showing interesting story lines (not that there is anything wrong with that.). I want the most direct and simple effect. Minimalist. I also don't need many effects. I have no need for more than a dozen basic killer effects.

Will the sources you suggest fill this need? Or, can you wake me up and suggest material in Corinda that you think fills this niche?

Thanks!
Mike


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 Post subject: Re: In the same boat...
PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2009 2:09 pm 
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Migwel wrote:
I set out this morning to start a discussion that turns out to have already been started by bwa1265.

I read 13 steps. Great material. But I am having difficulty applying it to the type of effects that I like to perform.

When I learned card magic, I used Royal Road. I found the sleights to be incredible building blocks. I tend use the sleights and controls to work "simple magic". Not a fancy story, not a lot of motion, (not behind the back, nor "do exactly what I tell you do do with the cards", etc) but instead, what I would do if I really were magic. (Example: Unprepared deck, classic force, no shuffle / don't take back the card, dramatic reveal.) (Example 2: Show bottom card, confirming it is not their's, use glide, now you have a great transformation.) (Example 3: Invisble deck) (Example 4: Out of this world) (Example 5: Palm their card off of the deck. Now do something amazing.)

I am looking for effects that parallel this approach (at least in how they appear to the audience) like Osterlind's Radar Deck or Banachek's effect where the word that you thoguht of is written by a pen under a hanky (I do not like the pen under the hanky part. I don't know the method, so I don't even know if that is part important to producing the effect. I like the think of a word, here it is. Next...)

So, I am not looking for material showing interesting story lines (not that there is anything wrong with that.). I want the most direct and simple effect. Minimalist. I also don't need many effects. I have no need for more than a dozen basic killer effects.

Will the sources you suggest fill this need? Or, can you wake me up and suggest material in Corinda that you think fills this niche?

Thanks!
Mike

The material in Corinda can quite easily fill that niche, if you perform the effects with no story whatsoever.
If you do that, though, I certainly reccomend using it sparingly. Writing down predictions, then revealing them can get a bit bothersome after a while, without any context whatsoever.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2009 3:13 pm 
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You are correct, planeswalker321. It must be done sparingly. That fits in well with the opportunties that I have to perform.

My typical opportunity is over a lunch, or a dinner, maybe a familiy gathering. My method is to casually suggest, "Hey. Care to help me with something unusual?". I let loose with a single, strong effect, and then without fanfare return to "What were we talking about?" Leaves them dumbfounded. Later in the evening, maybe I'll try another. Of course, if asked, "Hey can you show xxx that trick you did earlier?" I usually suggest, "Yes, but let's try something a little different." Then I do something totally different.

This type of performance lends itself to effects that are very natural and direct. The entertainment value comes from the intimacy of my spectator and I, and the experiment we are about to attempt together. It is not about telling a story about "four robbers who decide to rob a bank and agree to meet up later..." It is not about "this normal looking metal box", or "these normal looking envelopes", or "using this pad that I have".

I believe that you are correct about Corinda. In fact, since so many people swear by this as the starting point, I am sure that I am not seeing the forest for the trees. Can you help me by suggesting something that you think would play strong in such a setting. If so, I will go off and work up a routine and give it a test run. I will be glad to report back to others regarding the result.



Thanks!
Migwel


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2009 7:41 pm 
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Migwel wrote:
You are correct, planeswalker321. It must be done sparingly. That fits in well with the opportunties that I have to perform.

My typical opportunity is over a lunch, or a dinner, maybe a familiy gathering. My method is to casually suggest, "Hey. Care to help me with something unusual?". I let loose with a single, strong effect, and then without fanfare return to "What were we talking about?" Leaves them dumbfounded. Later in the evening, maybe I'll try another. Of course, if asked, "Hey can you show xxx that trick you did earlier?" I usually suggest, "Yes, but let's try something a little different." Then I do something totally different.

This type of performance lends itself to effects that are very natural and direct. The entertainment value comes from the intimacy of my spectator and I, and the experiment we are about to attempt together. It is not about telling a story about "four robbers who decide to rob a bank and agree to meet up later..." It is not about "this normal looking metal box", or "these normal looking envelopes", or "using this pad that I have".

I believe that you are correct about Corinda. In fact, since so many people swear by this as the starting point, I am sure that I am not seeing the forest for the trees. Can you help me by suggesting something that you think would play strong in such a setting. If so, I will go off and work up a routine and give it a test run. I will be glad to report back to others regarding the result.



Thanks!
Migwel

Ok, I suggest a center tear. It involves no story, and it's rather visual. If you're interested in stuff NOT in Corinda's book, I reccomend looking up some of Uri Geller's stuff, maybe throw in a kolossal Killer if you like cards. (Geller doesn't reveal his stuff; but Randi does!!!)

Also, perhaps shadow touch, if you have multiple people, and, one for the ladies, "floating ring."


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 1:30 pm 
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Thanks planeswalker321.

I will re-read the section on the center tear and will let you know how it turns out.

I looked into Kolassal Killer, based on your suggestion. I find it to be a very interesting effect. The pumping of the audience fits in well with the character I portray (A mentalist developing his ability. Not perfect, proud, nor all-knowing, But, humbly, I always seem to get it right, and I am often surprised, myself.). I can see myself doing the pumping. However, the written note on the card that shows you knew it would be off by one is a turn-off. Some see the note as the "WOW!!!", but to me it is a distraction. It is not how I would do it if I were "really magic" (HWIDIIIWRM). The wallet portion of the effect I like. Again, maybe not EXACTLY HWIDIIIWRM. But since the wallet can be placed on the table in plain sight at the outset of the trick, and there is nothing at all unexpected about me having a wallet, it becomes workable. (There are actually some other subtleties in KK that I consider distractions, but will not discuss here in the interest of not revealing the method. Let me know if you care to discuss more, offline. Maybe we can learn from each other.) I ordered Radar Deck last week and I expect to be performing it soon. Radar Deck is a closer fit to what I want that KK. The end is so much more direct.

I am working on an effect where I cut to any card named by a spectator. I am sure that this has been done before, but I enjoy coming up with an effect, and then developing a method on my own. Ideally the effect would be as follows: The cards are on the table, you name the card, I cut directly to it and reveal. (SEE NOTE 1 BELOW). I do not know how to accomplish that exact effect. Instead, my effect is based on me holding the cards. I explain that much of my work with mentalism is based on feelings and sensations; this is a feel that I continue to develop with practice, and I can show you what I mean. I'll ask you to just think of a card, to be sure that you are devoid of any external influence. Now tell me the card so that the others can appreciate what is about to happen. What I am able to do is cut to your card... I may not get it right on the first cut... (cut, don't look at cards, look off into space, thinking...) No, that's not it. (cut again, same idea...) But as I get closer, the sensation builds... No. (Third cut. Pause.) Yes, this seems right... reveal. And clearly you can see that this is the card you thought of just a moment ago. The trick can be repeated over and over, any card, no force. Sometimes I will get it on the first cut, sometimes second, sometimes third (but never peeking or revealing the wrong card). I have control over that, but at some cost / luck. (again, offline for more info) That variability and my up front admission that I am going to figure this out in front of them makes it seem more sincere (in my eyes). No cover, nor behind the back, nor counting, nor spelling. No "let me put it into your pocket and I will reach in and find it..." The fact that I am holding the cards and that I admit my own uncertainty emphasizes the feeling, struggle, realness of the effect.

NOTE 1: Realize that when I said, "You name the card, I cut directly to it and reveal" I do not mean to imply that this would be a sterile presentation. It may take several minutes to build to the point of the reveal. I may choose to cut the cards, but not immediately reveal, instead letting the sensation build, maybe even running a second effect in parallel. There needs to be showmanship. There needs to be passion and involvement. I just want to avoid props and unnecessary movement.

Regarding Uri Geller effects - Excellent suggestion! I use spoon bending. Recently purchased Liquid Metal which has some very nice moves and is adding to my presentation. At a restaurant or banquet, this is a fantastic fit for the type of effect that I am looking for. Can you suggest other Uri effects that I should start researching? The ideal effect - I sit across from you (maybe back is turned). You think of something and draw it on a 3x5 index card. (NOTE: I always carry 3x5's with me. People know me for that fact, so it would not come across as a prop.) I then proceed to recreate the drawing that you still hold in your hand. We compare... they match! Not using this large clipboard / unique mini clipboard that I happen to carry with me. Not "Pick one of my three books, using my pad lets all come up with a page number...).

Thanks again,
Mike


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2009 5:23 pm 
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Migwel wrote:
Thanks planeswalker321.

I will re-read the section on the center tear and will let you know how it turns out.

I looked into Kolassal Killer, based on your suggestion. I find it to be a very interesting effect. The pumping of the audience fits in well with the character I portray (A mentalist developing his ability. Not perfect, proud, nor all-knowing, But, humbly, I always seem to get it right, and I am often surprised, myself.). I can see myself doing the pumping. However, the written note on the card that shows you knew it would be off by one is a turn-off.

Tell ya what: I'll pm you a way to get around that.
Quote:
I am working on an effect where I cut to any card named by a spectator.

I'll PM you a way to do that.

The version that you do, Derren Brown has a routine like it. I'll pm you the details, let me know if I'm wrong.
Quote:
Regarding Uri Geller effects - Excellent suggestion! I use spoon bending. Recently purchased Liquid Metal which has some very nice moves and is adding to my presentation. At a restaurant or banquet, this is a fantastic fit for the type of effect that I am looking for. Can you suggest other Uri effects that I should start researching?

Keybending, pencil telekinesis (That one where you balance a pen on the edge of something, and move it without touching it,) also you could do that trick where he flips a page without touching it. There's another trick where he has someone draw a picture while his back is turned and he covers his eyes, and he recreates the drawing, then, although Uri doesn't, to my knowledge, use it, the haunted key trick may work well. (For practical reasons you'll understand once you learn the tricks, the haunted key works REALLY well with the keybending trick. Hint: The haunted key is NOT bent.)
Quote:
The ideal effect - I sit across from you (maybe back is turned). You think of something and draw it on a 3x5 index card. (NOTE: I always carry 3x5's with me. People know me for that fact, so it would not come across as a prop.) I then proceed to recreate the drawing that you still hold in your hand. We compare... they match! Not using this large clipboard / unique mini clipboard that I happen to carry with me. Not "Pick one of my three books, using my pad lets all come up with a page number...).
OOH, I know that one.

Thanks again,
Mike[/quote]


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