As I slowly, but surely, add a few items back to my once huge Alan Warner collection I find time to play with each piece more than ever before. There has never been any doubt about how beautiful Alan’s work is, but where he equally scores top marks is how he thinks through all the nuances of a relatively simple effect.
With this beautiful prop the spectator is asked to select any one of the 4 colors shown on the front of the fine teak holder. Then without any strange moves you simply take all 4 dominoes out and there predicted is the one chosen by the spectator. The dominoes can be replaced and are instantly ready for the next performance. It must be noted, that although there is no force of the colors the seemingly clean method of revelation of the color does not bear repeating to the same audience.
What strikes me with all of Alan’s magic is how he makes use of every chance to help the performer. In this case, the holder itself with the layout of the colors provides a subtle reminder how to remove the dominoes.
This is a very clean prediction effect and is beautifully made. If you have not seen some of Alan’s work up close and personal I suggest you head over to his wonderful website and see for yourself why he is clearly the king of mini-magic. If you get a chance to own some of his magic I strongly urge you to do so – in a world of mass produced items Alan stands out as one of the remaining true craftsman in our art.
Here we have another return visitor to my Alan Warner collection – Colourama. If you want a clean force of a color then this is the one.
You show an elegant teak holder with 6 small tablets. Each of the tablets has a recessed spot on its face, and each spot is a different color. You lay the tablets out in front of the spectator face down and they can choose any one with no force. You place the one they chose off to the side and now show that each of remaining tablets are clearly a different color. The spectator can then turn over the one they selected and it will always be the force color (in this case red).
As with all of Alan’s work he goes the extra mile. In this particular case he added a feature that enables the spectator to pick-up the force tablet without any fear of the secret being found.
The other neat feature about this effect is that reset is as simple as dropping the chosen color back into the holder along with the other tablets and you are ready to roll again. Alan will make up custom colors for you if you ask so if you want to force different colors you can.
BTW, I must note that although I am British, since moving to the USA in 1990 I have tried to spell color the American way without the "u". However, since "Colourama" is the name of the effect I keep the "u" in there. I don’t mind admiting I get very confused when I spell color when describing this effect! I blame it all on the Americans (of which I am now one) for taking a fine language and destroying the spelling!!!
Although Alan’s magic is beautiful and clever, for the most part I would not say it fits well in the category of Strolling or Walk-Around Magic. The props either require a table, have a fairly complicated set-up, or are simply too ornate to put up with the rigours of this type of Magic. Not so with this lovely piece.
I think this is a bit of a Warner Sleeper. The basic routine that Alan supplies works well, reset is a easy and no table is required. However, with a few extra color-changing knife moves you can extend the routine and really have a beautiful miracle on your hands that is always ready and is easy to do.
I would like to thank Doug Gorman for reminding me how great this little gem is and am glad to see it back in the Collection.
Ray Piatt really has some nice effects using his Gyp principle. This one is still my favorite and I’m glad it is back in the Collection. I like it because the wallet is very straight forward and normal looking, and yet you can do some wonderful effects.
You can really talior this to your own needs but one effect is where you say you are going to have a game of POKER without any cards. You go ahead and write the word POKER on the pad in the wallet and then put a check mark next to any letter. You now give the spectator a chance to guess any letter that you did not check. Of course they always pick your checked letter. This effect can be repeated without any fears.
It can be used to predict names, colors, places, etc – in fact anything you can write on the pad. There are no nail writes or other such devices and it is a wonderfully clever method.
Ok, so as much as I have seen some incredible routines with Thumb Writers, Nail Writers, Swami gimmicks and all devices for making some incredible predictions right under the noses of the spectator, I have just never been comfortable with them.
This Super Sharpie from Chris Smith really is an amazing device and if you have never felt comfortable with any of the other methods before I feel quite confident that you will with this one.
Chris has blended all the moves into very logical handling using the Sharpie – it is not messy and it is always ready to work. You really can do this under their noses with almost no balls at all.
I’ve always been a Devano rising card type of guy – with pins not sticky tape. However, I must say how impressed I am with Gary Plants’ Impossible Close-up Rising Card. It really is amazing and clean.
The deck appears ungimmicked and can be used before and after the rise as a normal deck of cards and can be examined. The case can also be examined if required. And yet even right up close two selected cards rise from the deck when placed inside the case. It looks amazing and quite different from any other rising card I have seen. You can show all sides of the case and there is just no explanation how the cards can be rising.
What is really amazing is how close the spectators can be and they can even take the cards from the case after they have risen and are still sticking out of the top, and you can then go straight into another card effect.
Beautiful, Clever, and Simple – Jerry you’re a marvel!
Ok, I was hoping I wasn’t going to have to say this ever again, but this new wallet that I just received from that Crazy, British, Leather Craftsman, Jerry "Lock up your Daughters" O’Connell is my new favorite! Of course like all magicians I got hung up on the pocket on one side of the wallet, but once you hold this baby and read the routine Jerry has for Shaxon’s incredible Confabulation effect, you don’t give it another thought – just like every single person who sees you perform. They don’t care about the pocket and neither should you.
What has become very clear to me after chatting with Jerry a bit and reading some of his routines is that this is a funny man, who is very serious about making props that work for real performing magicians. When you take the O’Connell Plus Wallet and add the new marvel Jerry calls "The Unit", you have an incredibly clean, easy, and oh so fooling method for doing Confabulation like effects – where 3 totally different items, colors, dates etc are chosen with zero force. (BTW, Jerry does not include the actual Confabulation routine since that is not his and it is assumed you are familiar with it, just in case you were worried!)
Jerry really thinks through his routines and then makes props that work perfectly. Reset is a snap too. He has streamlined it as far as anyone can take it. Anymore simplifying, and it won’t actually require a magician!
Although, next Christmas is not here yet, I already have my closing effect that will blow them all away.
Of course this wallet, without the addition of the Unit, is still the ultimate wallet with the Card To Wallet, Card to Sealed Envelope, and No Palm Card to Wallet features all built into the same beautiful wallet.
Jerry is Number One when it comes to wallets. Period.
Wow! You cannot believe how thin and smooth this Large Himber is from the Leather Master Craftsman Jerry O’Connell. I had a few of his items before these arrived, and was very impressed, but this wallet is amazing!
It is so thin and lies flat open or closed. Yes it just lies flat and it is really hard to see the other pocket when opened. Very functional and perfect for things like Ron Bauer’s Xerox Money. I literally threw out my other Himbers (well into my for ebay box!) when I opened up this wallet.
The stitching, the leather, everything about this wallet just is perfect. Yes it is just a Himber wallet, but so much better than all the others I owned or seen, it is like a new effect.
I bought the mini Himber too, and will probably buy a couple more just because they are so great I know I’ll be making much more use of my Himber wallet now.
Here we have another incredible Himber wallet from Jerry O’Connell! What a delight it is to play with his Himber Wallets. They are so thin and work so smoothly.
Like the Large Himber this stays flat open or closed and the flap is very hard to see.
Sometimes when things are made smaller they do not function as well as their large counterpart. Not so with this wallet – when you need a smaller Himber this is the perfect one. Fits in you shirt pocket easily and is thin, thin, thin! It feels very light too.
It just goes to show you that in all forms of craftsmanship, their really is a difference when you buy from the best. There is no doubt in my mind, when it comes to leather work the man to beat is Jerry O’Connell!
By now you probably realise what I think about Jerry O’Connell’s leather craftsmanship. But this beautiful device is not only made with the same great attention to detail that Jerry is famous for, but it really is a clever piece of magic.
Basically, it is the old add a number idea (3 or 4 people each write down a number and then a final spectator adds them up and it matches your prediction) but the way the gimmick works you can do the bit of business right in front of the audience, with nothing to steal away and no flaps to mess with. The wallet can even be handed to the spectator with absolutely no fear of the secret being discovered. It is perfectly engineered like no other effect of this nature I have seen.
Jerry O’Connell is the master of his craft and I am amazed it has taken me so long to get on board!
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