Lessons in Card Mastery by Darwin Ortiz

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ksevile
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Favorite Magician: Michael Vincent

Lessons in Card Mastery by Darwin Ortiz

Postby ksevile » February 5th, 2020, 4:25 am

What do you all think of this book? It’s a shame i don’t find much written about this book, Darwin’s most recent work. In my opinion, it is filled with some of Darwin’s greatest effects of all time. For some reason I’m prone to getting rid of magic books, so I actually just ordered it again because I loved it so much. It’s strange that I like the book so much, because a lot of the material in it I will never perform myself—for some reason I just like reading it and the ideas and descriptions, not do some of the effects “fit” me as an occasional performer.

Darwin is easily one of my favorite magic authors. I really like the analysis and credits sections of his books also.

Twelve the Hard Way and Fast Company are easily two of the best openers I’ve ever found. Incidentally, I believe Fast Company is probably the most overlooked Ortiz effect that I know of. I can barely find it mentioned in performance among a few circles. I just love this book and wanted to see what you all think as well.

performer
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Re: Lessons in Card Mastery by Darwin Ortiz

Postby performer » February 5th, 2020, 4:54 am

I thought his Strong Magic book was excellent and I am critical by nature. However, I see that although many people like the book a lot of other people don't. I have seen it panned unmercifully and I have absolutely no idea why. I agree with almost everything in it.

ksevile
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Joined: May 3rd, 2018, 4:05 pm
Favorite Magician: Michael Vincent

Re: Lessons in Card Mastery by Darwin Ortiz

Postby ksevile » February 6th, 2020, 1:28 pm

Perhaps someone can fill us in on such criticism or the overwhelming silence regarding Lessons in Card Mastery. 52 Pickup is one of the strongest effects you’ll see in my book.

ksevile
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Joined: May 3rd, 2018, 4:05 pm
Favorite Magician: Michael Vincent

Re: Lessons in Card Mastery by Darwin Ortiz

Postby ksevile » February 21st, 2020, 4:35 pm

Still complete silence from the magic community in regard to the criticism of this work. I don't mean to bump, but can someone fill me in on why. Or explain why or what they like about the work.

Brad Henderson
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Re: Lessons in Card Mastery by Darwin Ortiz

Postby Brad Henderson » February 21st, 2020, 4:49 pm

More books get bought than read. And fewer still have their material performed outside the day dreams of the readers - especially when that material requires any degree of work to present successfully.

People who love Darwin’s work, love Darwin’s work. Though fewer of those people actually perform his material.

Many people don’t care for Darwin’s work. Some may consider that an insult. I don’t. It suggests to me that his work isn’t for everyone, that it’s not so generic that everyone can say they like it a little.

So you are asking about people’s feelings on a book many won’t have interest in, fewer will actually read, and fewer still who will ever perform a single piece from it.

It seems to me you might be better served being the one to offer your detailed opinions and maybe that will encourage those who - for whatever reason - haven’t looked into it to do so, or those who have to chime in. It’s often easier to chime in than take the larger step of presenting a full fledge thoughtful critique.

I don’t have the book. I thought his card shark had great material in it. Really great. I felt scams and fantasies failed to hold up to the standards he set for himself with Darwin’s rule. The pieces were fine, but Too many failed to really set themselves apart as real improvements on what came before.

Like you, I haven’t heard much about the card mastery book. Saw lots of people expressing excitement for its release and arrival - but as usual - they seemed more interested in getting excited for the next book rather than really looking into their most recent investments.

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Christopher1979
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Re: Lessons in Card Mastery by Darwin Ortiz

Postby Christopher1979 » February 21st, 2020, 4:57 pm

If you like Michael Vincent than I can understand the correlation with you asking this question. Even though I love Darwin Ortiz's work I have not had time to look through Lessons in Card Mastery. All of Darwin Ortiz's work is top-notch and I have every reason to think likewise of this his latest publication.

I remember buying Cardshark when I was about 14/15 years old and it changed the way I thought about card magic forever.

I spend a lot of time studying the "real work" so magic-based gambling routines or Pseudo demos are not on my radar as much now although I do have my moments!

Talking about Michael Vincent, have you not searched on YouTube to see if he has reviewed Lessons in Card Mastery? as a student of Ortiz's it wouldn't surprise me.

Good luck! :)

ksevile
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Joined: May 3rd, 2018, 4:05 pm
Favorite Magician: Michael Vincent

Re: Lessons in Card Mastery by Darwin Ortiz

Postby ksevile » February 21st, 2020, 6:48 pm

Thank you Brad and Christopher respectively for your thoughtful and thorough replies.

I suppose my background of what got me interested in Lessons in Card Mastery might fill you all in on why I asked the question in the first place--that is, why my excitement, etc. (and, as an extension to Brad's suggestion).

Maybe around as early as perhaps 2009 or 2011, I purchased Darwin's "2nd lecture". Granted, at this point in time I was not even conditioned or even familiar with any of Darwin's effects, other than having watched and being inspired by Fast Shuffle from At the Card Table and watching his Card Cheating DVD. I recognized the overlap at this point in his work between traditional conceptions of "magic" (that is, supernatural) and extraordinary demonstrations on skill).

Anyways, in his second lecture, he opens with Fast Company. Upon seeing it, I was blown away. Here was a calculated and in my opinion brilliantly thought out effect that certainly seemed possible to pull off given enough skill, but the complete impossibility behind the climax of the effect suggested a much deeper mystery than skill--an almost inhuman proficiency and sense with the cards, so to speak. I just had to learn this effect because, and I don't know why this is, seeing Darwin perform it it was as if the effect resonated personally with me.

If anyone has overlooked or hasn't seen this effect, I would highly recommend it.

Alright. To be bluntly honest, much of the material in the book I have no aspiration to perform: the memorized deck stuff, the packet effects, and the effects which require gaffs. It has always been my aspiration, as an amateur hobbyist who wanted to go further than the average "I found your card" trick that anyone can do, to be able to do good magic with a deck as long as you had a table. To go further than the average casually interested observer who knows one trick to getting say a good 15 effects solidly down pat. I'm cutting this part short as its not relevant.

The effects in the book are great because the methods are so direct and the student who has learned them cannot so easily forget them. Something about the methodology of Passing Through, Twelve the Hard Way, Fast Company, Sudden Impact, and Positively Fifth Street (these are the routines from the book I perform that I'm most familiar with) struck me as very direct, and greatly within the reach of the intermediate card man. Yet the direct methodology produces truly astonishing effects--effects which, patently solidify the performer's reputation of proficiency with a deck of cards. As I'm writing this, I'm learning why I personally love these effects so much.

Twelve the Hard Way begins with a card selected and the performer randomly and astonishingly produces twelve cards of one single suit to apparently identify the selection. "When the selected card turns out not to match, the performer makes good by transforming the cards into the proper suit". I hope that made sense but in other words the selection turns out to be wrong and you reveal that they have changed into the correct suit with a classic magician in trouble situation. Another reason I love the book is because I love gambling themed magic which is what I was initially inspired by (having knowledge of Darwin's reputation), and the book, in Ortiz' tradition, has an entire section devoted to gambling magic.

The book to me is really great because there is something that any card man can garner from it, literally. Some effects are easy and some will truly take some work. Perhaps I like the book not merely for the effects, I now realize as I'm writing this, but because of the indelible mark that learning the procedures to produce the effects made on me in my "level" of card handling. It has been a very challenging venture, and as Michael Vincent's notes, Darwin makes no apology for the highly technical nature of his work. I think I'm realizing now too that I truly love the book because of the journey it took me on in trying to be a better card man. It allowed me to slow down and frame an effect from a lay person's perspective so that I could literally master it to make it as enjoyable for the audience as possible.

There is literally one effect in my performing history I have mastered--Fast Company. Upon performing it, I got the single greatest reaction of any audience in the entire history I have been doing card magic. I think for that reason that became an effect I really wanted to get down. To this day, I can do it with my eyes closed so to speak, and its the only card routine that I have ever truly mastered. There is not much to "think about" as far as sleights goes during the routine, but the seamless flow I've achieved has allowed me to relax and not rush the performance EVER. I have a very bad habit of getting nervous during a card trick, and mastering this effect allowed me to experience a new level of confidence like never before in front of an attentive audience.

Christopher, he has not reviewed it on YouTube so far. However, he has uploaded a performance that features two of the effects from it and he does them absolutely beautifully. He also did the Vegas Shuffle during that routine and inspired me to learn it also. I should note, that particular video, if anyone is interested, is a chance to see Michael Vincent in a truly different performing light than you may be used to. He nails it, and the ending is just superb!

Philippe Billot
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Re: Lessons in Card Mastery by Darwin Ortiz

Postby Philippe Billot » February 22nd, 2020, 5:25 am

You have a review here :

https://magicreviewed.com/reviews/darwi ... d-mastery/

I hope I can give a link here !


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