Wednesday, February 15, 2012

My Review - Emoticon

This is the second item that I received from Andrew Galanter. I was one of the lucky readers to receive a review copy. This is Emoticon and it is a routine that you can do with a packet of cards.

The pdf has 12 pages and the file size is 447 KB. The price of this pdf is $3. This effect requires you to use some different backed cards which I think most readers should not have any problem in obtaining these items. In addition, this routine is not very difficult to do.

In terms of the pdf, the author provides a very detailed explanation on each of the phases with great credits at the end of the explanation. In addition, the author also includes Youtube links on each of the phases so that the reader may grasp or have a clearer picture how the particular phase should look like. So, without further ado, let's examine what Emoticon is all about.

Emoticon is a packet trick that talks about emotions. I think the basic patter line serves as a good starting point. Personally speaking, based on the overall effect, the routine seems very strong because at the end of the routine, the performer shows the cards with different backs and a magical card is produced that shows "Therapist". However, I think the reader must familiarise himself with the overall effect before attempting the routine. The reason is because the routine is not merely "do and show" kind of act. Otherwise, the audience may have the difficulty and confuse what the effect is all about.  

However, the author did provide a very basic patter but I guess the reader still needs to think something that is more suitable and interesting to fit the routine. There are many technical sleights involved in each of the phases but as I mentioned earlier, I think it would be great if there is a great patter to support each of the phases. Or in other words, to make sense of it what you actually going to attempt. 

Overall, I like the routine. As mentioned earlier, if you could provide a good patter line to support those phases, I think the end climax may serve as a killer catalyst and the best part is, you may hand out the cards for examination and it instantly resets. I think $3 is a great deal for this little powerful routine. I couldn't ask for more.       


Thursday, February 9, 2012

My Review - Principles and Deceptions

Card Magic is a fascinating subject. The fascinating subject that I am referring to is not the experience that I gained from watching television or live performances in this context. The subject I am talking about is card principles.

It is because after reading and trying out some of the card principles, I discovered that card principles are very magical and even though if you know the secrets, still, if you follow each steps precisely, they will work! At times, they are very strong especially the cards can be given out for shuffling or cuts and yet, they still work as miracles!

Loyal readers know that I am a huge fan of Peter Duffie, who seems to spend a good deal of time in writing and publishing numerous wonderful eBooks. Previously, I was too occupied with my studies and I considered that as an inactive period in magic. Recently, with a deck of playing cards in my hands, I spent my spare time in going through Peter Duffie's Principles & Deceptions, which is a truly wonderful and mind-stimulating eBook.

It is an 18-page pdf, the size of the file is 925 KB and there are 6 parts detailing each of the principles. Each parts is hyperlinked and it makes the reader very easy in terms of navigating the whole pdf. In addition, there is a bonus section that explains Dave Campbell's Automatic Speller which is a fantastic routine!  

The card principles covered are not brand new and I am sure if you have been in card magic for long, you may come across the following names before such as "Gilbreath Principle", "Rusduck's Stay Stack", "Hummer Principle", "Finnel's Free Cut Principle" and among others. What makes this pdf stands out is after learning each of the principles, the author provides a test to challenge the reader's understanding.

I find that the tests are some sort of "mind-stimulant" foods which to induce the reader to explore more possibilities after learning a particular card principle. Another interesting side is that I learned quite a number of interesting facts and important bits of history on the creators of the card principles. 

Overall, I really, really enjoyed this eBook and hopefully, this ebook would serve as a progress in terms of my thinking and approaching in card magic principles. In addition, I also believe that this eBook would serve as a stepping stone to those who love card principles. I always find that the author's approaches to card principles are brilliant which not only can be found in this pdf, but also in his other eBooks such as Ulterior Motifs, and Cards in Principles which are commendable. Just do yourself a favour by visiting the author's online shop and you will be surprised with the large varieties of eBooks available.

Available at:


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

A Blissful Marriage

This routine is inspired by Hofzinser's Royal Marriages plot. It is a three-phase routine coupled with other interesting plots.

I came up this routine in 2009. As usual, packet tricks appeal to me a lot and this leads me to come up this version of Royal Marriages. At that time, it has 5 phases which I thought the routine was too lengthy.

I realised that the audience feels bored after many attempts of showing the splitting and matching of the packets. In addition, I also realised that too many phases actually cluttered the mind of the audience. So, I narrowed down this routine to three phases that is much easier to comprehend and follow.

Last but not least, this is not a very difficult routine and if you are familiar with the Elmsley Count, you should have no problem in performing this routine.

Here's what a few of them say:

"A Blissful Marriage is an excellent routine. The three phases work very well and build up, both logically, and magically. I love Royal Marriages effects, but only good ones - and this is indeed a good one!"
-- Peter Duffie

"Thanks a lot for the new effect. I love it. It is a very nice variation on the theme. You tied the phases together organically and made an entertaining routine from them. A powerful starting followed by two very strong phases."
-- József Kovács

"I had a chance to look check this out today and really loved it. You've really put together a great routine with some really clever phases. I must admit that I've never been one for the royal marriages plot, but your approach is definitely something I could see myself using! Great stuff as usual!"
-- John Gelasi