Catchy title, eh?
I've seen some posts where someone asks how they can improve their magic and get a list of instructional dvds/videos. Or instead of asking how to improve their magic they just ask for good dvds.
New material is not needed to become a better magician.
It is nice to have a big arsenal of effects. But it's not needed. Let me offhandedly almost quote a post I read a wile back. "Lets say there are one thousand card effects out there. Lets also say that I know about one hundred. I readily practice about fifty. I preform for real live audiences about... eight of these effects." I don't know who said this and i know its not an exact quote, but I'm pretty sure it was someone on this board. (If it was you... speak up so i can give credit.) Before starting this essay off, i would also like to say many of these concepts apply to other forms of skill.... such as playing an instrument or the suchlike.
So with out further adieu, lets get on with the list.
Ok, ok. I know we have all heard this a billion times before. But bear with me through this paragraph. First of, when you practice, set goals. Doing the "moves" over and over isn't going to cut it. This is what i did through my first few months of magic. I knew how to do the moves. But I didn't really know how to apply the move except for the effect I learned it for. Explore the move. Explore the routine. Try to tie in other effects you have. I don't really have anything else to say for this one.
Get a stack of note cards. At the top, write the name of the effect. Write a small description of the of the effect. At the bottom, write out information such as how many spectators you need, angles, or special preparation. I don't know where I heard this idea, but it has helped me uncover some hidden gems in my arsenal and also helped me remember what effects I know.
I'm not really talking about SYM and SAM meetings in specific, but its more in the sense of finding other people with the same interests in magic. By comparing performances, sharing ideas and reviewing material, you get a different take on concepts and a fresh look at effects. To find an actual SAM meeting go to www.magicsam.com
and use the "assembly locator" right at the top.
Preform multiple times a week. As a magician, you forfeit your sense of wonder. Seriously, recall the last time you saw a magic show. Compare your reaction to that of one you saw before you were into magic. There's a big difference between being truly amazed and being surprised. I know that I did not forfeit my sense of wonder to sit in front of a mirror and talk to myself while holding some cards.
What about you?
Well... Thats my essay. I hope you took something out of it and manage to apply it.
Oh, and keep a look out for "Assortment of cheap stuff on Pengun" in the reviews section.