Originally posted by Mike Wethington:
Thank you all for your excellent advice. My actor, while dedicated and earnest, doesn't have much time to practice as he spends most of his free time writing scripts, shooting shows, doing post-production, etc. He'd love to do more, but he still needs to sleep a few hours a night. :)
I will investigate all of these items. Does anyone have a good pencil levitation?
Mike, one CAN do a good pencil LIFT using the ITR. Please don't levitate it, but do something like the rising money effect from Al Baker - Eugene Burger has an excellent version of it in one of his books.
BUT - beware - on higher definition TV's the gimmick can often be seen even if the naked eye in the studio cannot see it.
One effect that no one has mentioned is Mark Genest's No. 2 Pencil. A simple paddle move with some rather fun extras. I used it for a year at the late, lamented Michael Jordan's Restaurant in Chicago and for several years at Medieval Times in Schaumburg, IL. Often, I would just do the effect with one of their souvenier pencils instead of the gaffed one from Genest's set.
One warning on this - it is a bit "knacky" as Jay Sankey would say. There is a bit of a knack that can be mastered by someone who already knows the paddle move in a very short time.
It sent sales of the pencils through the roof, too!
Lee Darrow, C.Ht. http://www.leedarrow.com