Amazing optical illusion makes black and white image appear color

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Stare at the dot. Enjoy the magic! (via r/gifs) Read the rest

An adorable magic trick

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(Thanks, Dimitrios!) Read the rest

How to make your shoelaces appear to tie themselves

A delightful and simple illusion. (DaveHax)

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A quick "fuck you" of a card trick

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Card manipulator Alix Becle:

A video posted by Alix Becle (@alixbcl) on Jan 2, 2016 at 7:16am PST

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The story of magic: how narrative destroys conjurers' effects, or elevates them to transcendence

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The Jerx is an anonymous, iconoclastic blog written by a heterodox magician who holds his fellow magicians in disdain for their terrible storytelling skills. Read the rest

Bicycle Big Foot playing cards

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I figured Pesco might enjoy my magic tricks more, if I was using Bicycle's Big Foot deck.

The backs on this deck are just lovely. An absolutely homage to the Bicycle Rider Back, but done with Big Foot. Each face card is an illustration of a specialized, geographical Big Foot, and you'll rapidly learn the names from Ucu to California Desert Sasquatch. The numbered cards each include some Big Foot trivia!

I'm trying to come up with a Yeti themed trick!

Bicycle Bigfoot Playing Cards via Amazon Read the rest

REVEALED: the trick behind magicians' baffling coin-vanishes

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The quickness of the hand deceives the eye. Read the rest

Podcast episode about creativity, paradox, and what if questions

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Last month I attended a lecture by David Ben, and became an instant fan. He's a fascinating Toronto-based magician and the co-founder of Magicana, a "not-for-profit organization dedicated to exploration and advancement of magic as a performing art." In this episode of the Face2Face podcast, Ben talks about his lifelong obsession with magic, creativity, paradox, and what if questions. Read the rest

Learn epic tricks with the Penguin Magic starter kit, 59% off in the Boing Boing Store

Penguin Magic is a great way to get into magic tricks, and master the art in no time.

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Derren Brown sends creepy life-size Victorian dolls into the London Underground

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The two creepy head-characters rode the Northern Line, pushed an empty pram down the platforms, and sat down to play trains at Hamley's toy-store, as a publicity stunt for Mind Gap, a new theme park ride designed by stage conjurer/hypnotist Derren Brown (previously) that will open in March 2016 at the Thorpe Park theme park in Chertsey, England.

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Watch this young man's captivating card trickery

The incredible Zach Mueller up to his old (and new) tricks again! See more at Mueller's cardistry company site Fontaine Cards.

Previously: "Watch this mesmerizing floating cards magic"

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The Right Way To Do Wrong, Houdini on deception

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The Right Way To Do Wrong presents a unique opportunity to experience Harry Houdini in his own words. A collection of the master magician's interviews of police, grifters, swindlers, and criminals of all sort. These papers also give a fantastic glimpse into Houdini.

I expected another dreary book of magic, written in dated English, with references to things I'd never understand. What I found is a fascinating collection of captivating essays that also open a window into who Harry Houdini was! While I very much enjoyed hearing stories about how turn of the century pick-pockets plied their trade, I also learned that Houdini has a goofy sense of humor. Peppered with corny jokes and oddball witticisms, we not only learn the secrets to some of histories greatest magician's tricks, but get a glimpse into the author.

For fans of magic, or just budding con-men, I highly recommend The Right Way To Do Wrong.

The Right Way to Do Wrong: A Unique Selection of Writings by History's Greatest Escape Artist (Neversink) via Amazon Read the rest

The wallet that does nothing

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Hammacher Schlemmer is a mostly mail-order company from which I’ve bought some lovely cashmere sweaters for my wife at Christmas. The company is renowned for its entertaining mail-order catalogue (and a great return policy) which has provided me with hours of fun reading over the years.

Often the cover features some incredibly outlandish extravagance designed solely for really wealthy folks, and which often costs a stratospheric amount of money. Top of the line at the moment is a “Five Person Exploration Submarine” which can descend to 656 feet, weighs over 7.7 tons and costs—take your seats, please—$2,700,000. As Dr. Evil used to say, “Almost three MILLION dollars.”

This year’s new and more reasonably priced money pit is a racing simulator for $185,000. It looks like a lot of fun, and my daughter says she rode something like it at Epcot at Walt Disney World, but something tells me that whoever receives it will lose interest ’ere long.

The exact prices are unimportant because they’re silly. As far as most of us are concerned, we’re far more likely to get hit by a bus than be given one of these gifts.

I genuinely enjoy Hammacher Schlemmer’s catalogue simply because it’s filled with incredibly weird things, like the remote-controlled flying shark mini-blimp for $40, and “The NASA Sleep Promoting Light Bulb” for $40.

There are also lots of handy things, like well-made flannel pjs, nice lined gloves, and so on. It’s a real 90-page potpourri and you should definitely call 1-800-543-3366 and request a free catalogue. Read the rest

Eerie lifelike sculpture of Harry Houdini

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He's been dead since Halloween, 1926, but Harry Houdini just won’t die. The old bastard really won’t go away.

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A beautiful card-magic tribute to Paris

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Magicpeacelove writes, "Shin Lim, who created the extraordinary card act that took Penn & Teller (and the magic world) by storm has just released another rather stunning card act, this one in tribute to Paris. It looks like CGI but it's not; just beautiful magic done by a young master." Read the rest

66% discount for Boing Boing readers on the documentary, Our Magic

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Our Magic from R. Paul Wilson on Vimeo.

The documentary Our Magic by filmmaker R. Paul Wilson lifts the curtain behind which magicians have worked for a century and a half. Our Magic, however, does not explain how tricks work — that’s not the real point of magic. How magicians work, how their childhood experiences feed into what makes them seek such a specialized field of endeavor, is the real secret. Watch Wilson’s award-winning short film The Magic Box to get a taste of not only his talent as a filmmaker, but what makes magicians tick.

Few people who love magic do not feel the well of emotion which The Magic Box (above video) evokes. But why? What makes a grown man (or woman) teary-eyed by watching a short film about something so seemingly inconsequential as a magic trick? The documentary Our Magic answers that question, and does so in an entertaining and artistic manner. Most of the world’s best magicians participated in the project, and with the help of Kickstarter, R. Paul Wilson has created a unique piece of cinema.

Happily, Our Magic is now available via Vimeo on Demand either to rent or download and own. The price is startlingly low, and readers of Boing Boing can get a 66% discount by entering the code “BoingBoing” in the appropriate spot. Read the rest

A con man reinvents himself as a reality TV magician

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Aiden Sinclair claims he was a con man who spent five years in prison after turning himself in to U.S. Marshals. Today, he is a magician and performer who shares stories of his life as a grifter. He's assumed many identities in the past, impersonating a Navy Seal, a veteran of the French Foreign Legion, a DEA agent, and a cruise ship bartender. Jess Zimmerman of Atlas Obscura has a long profile about Aiden Sinclair, and explores the idea that Sinclair's latest persona as a “grifter magician” could merely be his latest false identity.

Whatever the case may be, he is a good magician! Read the rest

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