Suspension of Belief The Little House in the … Instant Sandwich Little Papers The red Tape (Erazed)* Marie Antoinette*
Tricks from “Discovery of a new world”, except * from lecture note N°°1
Suspension of Belief (February 1999)
Effect The magician borrows a deck and proceeds to attract progressively more cards to the tip of his pen from the table, as if there is a magnetic attraction. He finishes the effect by attracting approximately half the deck at once with the pen. He immediately hands the deck and pen out for examination. In an alternative effect, the pen finds a card lost in the deck (see “Application”). It is almost impromptu, requires no sleights, and uses no magnets, threads, wires or any complicated gimmick.
Props - A close-up mat or any other soft, performing surface. The effect will not work if you perform it on a hard or slick surface. - A pen. The diameter of the pen must be rather large, with a FLAT end (the end opposite the writing tip). I use a “Ball Pentel fine point R50”. - A deck of cards. The newer the deck, the better it will work. Avoid old decks or bent cards. - A very small quantity of blue-tak, the equivalent of two or three rice grains (see Illustration 1 ).
Preparation Although the preparation is not necessary, The preparation makes the cleanup easier, adds an intriguing dimension to the effect, and allows you to show that the pen does not contains any gimmicks. With a X-acto knife, cut the pen approximately an inch (two and a half centimeters) from the writing end, as shown in Illustration 1.
Empty the pen by removing the tip, ink cartridge, and any other inner components. You will be left with an empty tube and the cap. Put the cap back on the pen, making it appear normal.
Apply the little dab of blue-tak to the end without the cap, as shown in Illustration 2. Flatten the blue-tak evenly on the end of the pen, making sure that it does not protrude from the edge of the pen.
Presentation Borrow a deck of cards and remove the pen from your jacket pocket. Hold the pen vertically in your right hand, with the flat end containing the blue -tak pointing down, as shown in Illustration 3. Place a card face-down on the card mat. Lower your right hand and contact the center of the card with the end of the pen. Raise your right hand approximately five or six inches (fifteen centimeters), as shown in Illustration 4. The card will adhere to the end of the pen. Do not hold this position too long, so that you will be consistent with the following phases. Lower the card back onto the mat and detach the pen from the card as follows: place your left fingertips onto the tabled card and tilt the pen forward with the right hand. The pen will come away from the card without any noise. Dominique Duvivier suggested this method of removing the pen. Place a second card on top of the first one, at an angle. Make sure, however, that the centers of the cards align, as in Illustration 5. The angling of the cards creates a stronger visual impact, and apparently increases the impossibility. This is also an idea from Dominique Duvivier. Place the tip of the pen onto the center of the two-card packet, and press down on the two cards slightly. Immediately, raise your right hand about five or six inches (fifteen centimeters), as before. The two cards will adhere to the pen. When you press down on the cards, you force the air out from between them, creating a slight vacuum. This causes them to adhere to each other. You must not pause during this sequence, because the vacuum will only last a few seconds. When you lift your hand hold it for a couple seconds at the most before lowering the cards back to the table. This ensures that the bottom card does not fall to the table. If it falls, the illusion will be ruined. Detach the pen from the cards as before.
You can proceed with a third and/or fourth card, as shown in Illustration 6. The effect will look more and more impossible with each additional card. Make sure to press the end of the pen firmly on the cards to create the vacuum, but do not appear to press hard, as it would be a “tell”.
For consistency, raise your right hand for the same amount of time each time you lift it off the table, no matter how few or how many cards you have. You must practice this up-and -down motion of the right hand until the actions look the same each time. For the finale, add about twenty cards to the tabled packet. Square the tabled cards on the center of the card mat. Position your left hand, palm-up, approximately five or six inches (about fifteen centimeters) to the left of the tabled pack. Press the end of the pen very firmly on the center of the top card of the tabled packet. It is possible that the blue-tak will get so flat that it protrudes from the edges of the pen, but do not worry about it. Immediately and smoothly, raise the pen a couple inches or more. The packet will adhere to the tip of the pen, as shown in Illustration 7. Without pausing, move the right hand above the left hand, as in Illustration 7, and lower the right hand so that the packet enters into left-hand dealing position. Detach the pen from the cards as before. This whole sequence lasts for a very short period of time. It must look as if you use the pen to lift up the packet and transfer it into your left hand. Depending on various factors, such as humidity and the type of cards used, it is possible that the cards will separate before you place the pack into the left hand. This is not important, as long as the cards fall into the left hand. With practice you can even use more cards. Depending on how fresh the deck is, I can sometimes lift a full deck at once. Perform the clean-up, as follows: Remove the cap with your left hand. Raise both hands to chest level, orienting the cap and pen, so that the interiors of the cylinders face the spectators, displaying them empty. Simultaneously, position your right thumb on the end with the blue -tak and press the thumb upward to remove the blue-tak. The blue-tak will adhere to the tip of the right thumb and you can hand out everything for examination.
Hot Tips Before applying the blue -tak, rub the flat end of the pen against your forehead. This will apply a thin layer of oil to the tip of the pen and cause the blue-tak to detach more easily. The end of the pen must be as flat as possible to facilitate both the performance and the clean up. You can trim the end of the pen with sandpaper to make it as flat as possible.
Credits The idea of generating a short vacuum to make a few cards adhere to the hand was published by Marv Long in his routine “Sticky Cards” (see Apocalypse, Vol. 3, No.4, Issue 28, April 1980, by Harry Lorayne). It seems, however, that not everyone can perform it. In addition, it is not reliable for those that can. Using a pen allows you to raise more cards at once, does not rely on the performer’s skin, provides a better visual impact, and provides a very interesting “false lead” at the end.
Application The basic principle can be used to find a selection lost in the deck. Gaëtan Bloom was the first to suggest this idea. Borrow a deck of cards, and secretly crimp the corner of the bottom card downward. Have a spectator select a card and place it back into the deck so that it ends up directly beneath the crimped card. Cut the deck a few times so that the selection is near the bottom third of the deck. Put the deck on the table and immediately cut off the top half of the deck. Perform the effect with the top half of the deck as before, ending with the top half in dealing position. Place the half in the hand onto the table. Position your left hand palm-up to the left of the other, tabled half and immediately press the end of the pen on top of that half, as before. Raise your right hand, causing all the cards above and including the crimp to adhere to the pen. Immediately, transfer the “attracted” half into your left hand. Put the lefthand packet on top of the other, tabled half. Have someone check that the top card of the remaining pile is the selection
The Little House in the … (September 98) This is an unusual effect in which the shapes of several holes change shapes in the spectator’s hands. The magician shows four cards with holes in their centers. Three of these cards are red spot cards and have ho use-shaped holes in their centers. The fourth card is black with a diamond-shaped hole in its center. These four cards are shown and placed between the spectator's outstretched hands. The magician removes the black, diamond-holed card from the packet and puts it in his pocket. After a magical gesture, the spectator opens his/her hands to reveal that not only has the black, diamond-shaped card returned, but now all the cards have diamond-shaped cutouts. Everything can be examined.
Four black cards with a diamond-shaped hole cut into each of them. The dimensions of the holes must be precise. Follow the template below (Figure 1). These will be referred to as the diamond-cards.
Two red cards with a house-shaped hole in their centers. Follow the template above (Figure 1). These will be referred to as the house-cards. Treat the back of one of the house-cards with non-permanent (Post-it) glue on both sides of the house-shaped hole (i.e., near the middle of the short ends of the card.
Devious Principle If you place the house cards on top of each other with the points of the houses in opposite directions, a diamond-shaped hole will appear in the center of the double card. The other parts of the cutouts cuts blend into the back design of the cards and are virtually invisible.
Set-up Place the cards face-down on the table in the following order: normal house-card with the tip pointing towards you, four diamond -cards, the house-card with glue, with the tip pointing towards you. Turn the packet face-up, sideways, as if you were turning a page of a book.
Performance Tell your spectators that you have four cards, three with houses in their centers, and one with a diamond. Display this condition as follows: Execute the first two counts of the Elmsley Count. Keep the remaining two cards slightly fanned, making sure you do not squeeze these cards together and cause them to adhere. Peel the top card of the pair onto the others. Turn the remaining card face-down, end-for-end, then turn it face-up, sideways and place it on top. This will reorient the ends of the card so that the tip of the house now points away from you and in the opposite direction from the card below it. Turn the whole packet face-down and place it onto the spectator's outstretched hand. In the process, gently squeeze the cards together so that the card with the glue sticks to the one next to it. Without pausing, ask the spectator to place his/her other hand palm-down onto the packet (Figure 3).
Reach in between the spectator's hands and remove the bottom card of the packet, actually a double card held together by the glue. It will appear as if you are removing the diamond-card when you are actually removing both house-cards. Immediately continue by briefly showing the back of this (double) card, and then placing it in your pocket, explaining that you will make this card jump back into the spectator's hands. Perform a magical gesture and ask the spectator to open his/her hands. He/She now holds four, normal diamond-cards.
Additional tips To make the cutouts easier to recognize from a long distance, you can outline the edges on the face of the cards with a felt-tipped marker. You can also add a chimney or other ornamental designs onto the roofs of the house-cards. These additional designs will make the effect more personal and will not affect the method. Special thanks to Dominique Duvivier and Quoc Tien Tran for their ideas and advice.
Instant Sandwich (May 1999)
Effect The magician has a card freely selected and lost in the deck. He shows two jokers, back and front, then tosses them onto the table. The selection visibly appears between the jokers, without them even contacting the deck! Watch the demo here
Set-up Three identical jokers (make sure they match, i.e., do not mix the "Guarantee" Jokers with the "plain" ones). Treat one of these jokers with non-permanent glue on its face (such as Post-it glue). We will refer to it as the "sticky" joker. Place one of the ordinary jokers face-up on the bottom of the face-down deck. Place the two other jokers face-up onto the table, slightly overlapping in a fanned condition. The sticky joker is on top of the normal one.
Method Have a card selected and control it to the bottom, underneath the face-up joker. Obtain a left fourth finger break above the two bottom cards of the deck. Transfer the deck into right-hand Biddle grip, taking over the break with the right thumb. Pick up the two jokers with the left hand, showing that there is nothing between them. Execute a Charlier cut with the two jokers in your left hand, thus inverting their positions. The sticky joker will now be on the bottom. Square then in a left-hand dealing grip, and press down their centers with your left thumb, causing them to stick together. You now have a double card (that can be handled like a single) in your left hand. You will now use a Han Ping Chien move with cards. The mechanics and timing are the same as those in the regular HPC move with coins. Briefly, toss the double in the direction of the right hand, directly below the deck. Simultaneously, release both cards beneath the thumb break onto the table.(Figure1)
Without pausing, move the right hand to the right to allow a full view for the spectators. A three-card sandwich is now visible on the table. The face-down selection is between two face-up jokers. It seems as if the selection has materialized between the two jokers, without any contact with the deck. Turn the sandwiched card over and take a bow!
Little Papers (February 2001)
Effect The magician shows five little square pieces of paper – each little square has a different color. One of these pieces is chosen and signed onto its face by a spectator. It is then "shuffled back" with the others. Another spectator (not a stooge!) is asked to wet his fingertips (saliva, etc.) and place each fingertip onto each slip of paper. He is then asked to raise his hand. Each paper stays attached to each fingertip, thanks to the moisture on his fingers. The magician now asks him to shake his hand vigorously: all the pieces fall from his fingers except for one piece that stays firmly in place on his fingertip: the spectator's selection!
Props You will need five little slips of paper (5cmx5cm), that you will cut out from a very special paper. This is a very specific printer paper called "Epson Photo Quality" that has a very interesting property (it works with almost all glossy photo paper and glossy paper for ink jet printer). The face on which the photos are printed on is slightly more "white" than the other side (we will now refer to this side as the "printing side"), and acts as a suction cup when it is contacting a liquid. This means that this particular side will strongly adhere to your fingertips if you have wetted them with water or saliva. The other side of the same paper would adhere too, but clearly not as strongly. Cut out five 5 x 5 cm pieces from this paper. To conceal the fact that both sides aren't the exact same color, I color both sides of each paper with a different color (using coloring crayons): red, blue, green, yellow and black.
Presentation Show the five slips to the audience, making sure they are all facing the same way, i.e. the printing face (that is lighter in color) is facing towards the floor. Have one of these papers freely selected and have it signed on the face opposite to the printing side, then have it returned among the four other slips (signed side down ), which means that the selected and signed piece of paper is now the odd slip amongst the five: it is the only piece with its "printing side" facing upwards. You only have to ask another spectator to very lightly wet his fingers (using the condensation on a glass of cold water or saliva, etc.), then press each fingertip on a different slip of paper (Figure1). Ask him to raise his hand, then shake it vigorously in the air: all the pieces fall down on the floor, except for the selection, which stays attached to his finger!
Final notes Virtually all quality "printing papers" have this very interesting property. You must therefore choose one with a very similar texture/grain/color on both sides, so that the method is well-concealed. Also, I find the effect much more interesting if the spectator that is supposed to find the selection doesn't know which slip of paper has been selected. You can ask him to turn his back towards the audience or leave the room, then come back later on for the miracle. I also take care to never touch the papers myself, but rather give instructions to the volunteer, which makes the effect more impossible to reconstruct – just in case someone could think I could secretly apply some glue onto the selected paper. It is also interesting to ask the spectator to put his hand behind his back, shake it vigorously, then bring it forwards again, to show that he is now "holding" only one piece: the selection. This allows for more suspense. This is a very original and interactive trick – have fun!
The Red Tape ( Erazed) (November 1996) The magician has a spectator select and sign a card on the face. He explains that he will slice through the center of the card so that he can show the "inside" of the selection. After a magic gesture, the selection splits in half, leaving a card signed on the face with a blank back, and a card with a blank face and a normal back. The magician makes an attempt at restoring the card by putting it back together with red tape. Realizing that it is unimpressive to the spectators, he offers to try something astounding. He removes the selection from the deck and performs a magical gesture. He removes the tape from the card, revealing that it is whole again. After a final gesture, he spreads the deck on the table revealing that all the cards in the deck are blank on the face. When the spectator turns over their selection the face of the selection is gone, but his/her signature remains. The basis of this method is a concept that allows you to make a signed card become blank, even allowing the spectator to check the face when he/she signs it. This principle opens itself up to numerous applications. Demo HERE
a blank-faced deck
a Fako-sheet (Erazed Refill) - these are transferable pips and indices that you can use to make your own gaffed cards, by transferring these pips onto the face of a blankcard. They can be found in any magic shop or HERE
red or black plastic electrical tape - use red tape if the signed card is red, and black if the signed card is black.
The basic concept involves applying electrical tape onto a card prepared with Fako transfers. When you remove the tape, the pips will come away with the tape, without leaving any residue. This process will leave you with a completely blank card. I used to use transparent tape, which meant that I had to conceal the tape from the spectators' view when I was detaching it from the card, since the pips would be visible when I removed the tape. Michael Weber suggested that I use red or black electrical tape instead of transparent tape, so that the detached pips would blend into the tape, thus being rendered invisible. I thought this was a brilliant idea. Many thanks, Michael.
Remove one of the blank face cards from the deck. Using the Fako sheet, make a regular-looking ace, two, three, four or five. Assume you have made the Five of Diamonds. In this case you will use the red tape. Arrange the deck as follows: place two blank -faced cards face to face (creating an impromptu double-backed card) and place them on top of the face-down deck. Place the prepared five of diamonds face-down on top of the deck to complete the setup.
Force the top card of the deck, using a method that does not disturb the order of the top three cards. Hand the force card to the spectator and ask him to sign the card on its face. It is important that the signature does not overlap any of the pips, otherwise there will be parts of the signature that will be missing at the end of the effect. You can avoid this by using a very thin-tipped marker, or using a lower value card, being that there will be fewer pips on the card. Justify it (writing a smaller signature, etc.) as you see fit. You will now apparently split the selection in half. Take the signed card and place it face-up on top of the deck. Obtain a left little finger break beneath the top three cards. Turn over the top three cards as one, and pretend to slice the card in half. Without any pause, remove the top, face-down card of the deck, revealing a blank face on the top of the deck. Turn over the card you hold to reveal a blank face. Explain that these blank sides are the inside of the selection. Place the card in your hand onto the table with the blank side facing upwards. Execute a double turnover of the top two cards of the deck. Take the top, signed card and place it face-up onto the tabled card. Put the deck aside for a moment. Explain that you will restore the selection magically, or perhaps not. Remove the electrical tape and attach the two cards together. Make sure that the sticky side of the tape covers all the pips and indices on the signed selection. The way you apply the tape will depend upon the value you use. -
If it is an ace, only use a single length of tape that must run diagonally across the face of the card. ( Figure 1 ) If it is a two or a three, use the same diagonal length as described above (to cover the middle pip and indices), and an additional length that runs vertically down the middle of the length of the card to cover the top and bottom pips. ( Figure 1 ) If it is a four or a five, use two lengths of tape, each running diagonally across the face, forming an “X”. ( Figure 1 )
Once the two "half-cards" are taped together, place them back into the deck and shuffle it. Cut the deck so that the taped cards are now on the face of the deck. It is not difficult to locate the pair of taped cards, since the tape makes them act in a manner similar to a thick card. Turn the deck face-up and hold it in left-hand dealing grip. Tilt the face of the deck inwards so that only you can now see the face of the taped pair. Remove the tape, also removing the pips and indices in the process. Tilting the deck upward prevents the audience from prematurely seeing the blank
face. Remove the tape entirely from the pair of cards, crumple it into a small ball, and then place it aside. Take the top card (the signed card that is now blank) and place it face-down onto the table, without showing its face. Point out that the selection is now restored, since it has a single thickness. Explain that all the faces of the cards have disappeared in the splitting process. Ribbon spread the deck face-up onto the table to show that all the cards are now blank. Turn the tabled card over, revealing that it is now completely blank, except for the spectator’s signature. You can give the card as a souvenir. Additional Note This effect appeared in the French magazine "Le Magicien" - Issue 146.
Get the Latest tips for this effect HERE
Marie-Antoinette (June 1998) The magician has two spectators select cards (assume they are the Queen of Spades and the Eight of Hearts). He tells a story about the French Queen MarieAntoinette, who was beheaded during the French Revolution. The magic of the guillotine! After a snap of the fingers, the face of the Queen of Spades visibly vanishes from the card, leaving a hole where her head was. The missing head reappears on the back of the Eight of Hearts.
Using an Exacto knife, cut out one of the heads on a Queen of Spades as shown in Figure 1. Glue the back of the head to the back of the Eight of Hearts. Position the head onto the back so that the head aligns with the cutout on the Queen of spades when the cards are placed back to back, as shown in Figure 2. In effect, when the cards are back to back, they will look normal.
Set-up Put the Eight of Hearts face-down onto the table with the head towards you. Place the Queen of Spades face-down on top with the cuto ut also at the inner end. Drop the rest of the deck on top. Presentation With the deck in left-hand dealing grip, obtain a left fourth finger break above the bottom card. Transfer the deck into right-hand Biddle grip, taking over the break with the right thumb. Cut half of the deck from the top to the bottom, to bring the prepared card to the center of the deck, still maintaining the break. Dribble the cards into the left hand, requesting a spectator to call, “Stop”. When he/she says stop, drop all the cards above the break. Turn the left hand palm-down and deal the eight face-up onto the table, to avoid flashing the head on its back. Place the left-hand’s cards on top of those in the right, bringing the Queen of Spades to the bottom. Holding the deck in left-hand dealing grip, catch a fourth finger break above the queen. Insert the Eight of Hearts face-up into the break, above the queen. Make sure that the head is positioned in the same direction as the cutout (i.e., nearest to you) so that cards “nest” together when the Eight is in the deck. Force the Queen of Spades via a Hindu Shuffle. It is the Queen of Spades. Square the cards and flip the deck over, end for end. The prepared Queen in now on the face of the deck but it appears normal because the head glued to the back of the Eight can be seen through the hole in the Queen. By flipping the deck over longitudinally the prepared end will now be closest to the spectators.
Take the top two cards as one, keeping them squared so that the head of the Queen does not separate from the rest of the card. Flip the deck face-down into left-hand dealing grip. Replace the double card face-up on top of the face-down deck, leaving it out-jogged. The "prepared head" of the queen is still oriented towards the audience. You will now make the head of the queen vanish in full view, using a move that is similar in mechanics to the Victor Change. Move the left hand up and down slightly. Simultaneously, contact the outer end of the bottom card of the double with the left first finger. Curl the first finger towards the deck, pushing the Eight of Hearts flush with the deck. The movement of the hand will conceal the movement of the card. From the audience’s view, the head of the Queen of Spades visibly vanishes. Remove the Queen from the top of the deck, tilting the deck inwards to avoid flashing the head of the queen on top of the deck. Put the Queen onto the table. Cut the deck to lose the Eight of Hearts in the center. After a short pause, ribbon spread the deck face-down on the table, revealing the Queen’s head. Remove the card to reveal that the head is attached to the Eight. Final Note You can also out-jog the double, showing the queen from the center of the deck and perform the mechanics of the change described above. This will automatically load the Eight into the center.
I wish to thank the following people for their help, support and suggestions:
Dominique Duvivier Michael Weber Lee Asher Marc DeSouza Sébastien Clergue Gaétan Bloom Anne Agnès Jean-Claude and Clara
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All rights reserved - Tous droits réservés, Copyright Mathieu Bich – November 2004 Translated in English by Sébastien Clergue Many thanks to Sam Iravani and Aaron Shields for their help. Illustrations by Isabelle Dujeu Cover design by Mateo Back cover by Miguel No part of this publication may be reproduced, transmitted in any form or by any means – electronic, mechanical or digital. Photocopying, recording or any information storage and retrieval system now known or to be invented is prohibited without written permission.