Posts Tagged humor
My wife loves to watch “deals” websites that specialize in children’s and moms’ stuff. Zulily is one of those sites that she recently ordered some items from. Now, I know, I know. It’s not magic related, but I couldn’t get over the thank you card they sent along with her order and I think there’s something we can learn from it. Here, have a look at it:
First of all, here’s a short comment on the design: all of the design elements work well to portray a store that specializes in baby and motherly products. It’s simple yet elegant and is soft and calming. The thing I really liked about it, though, is the copy around the edge of the card which reads:
A simple card isn’t quite enough to thank you properly. You deserve something extra. Please consider yourself high-fived and confetti-showered. We also did a happy dance in your honor. With spins! Still, we want to give you more. That’s why we put a Very Fun Thing on the back of this card.
Of course on the back they put a fun, short activity that you may or may not take part in.
That short bit of copy around the edge adds a fun, light-hearted human element to what would normally have been a bland, yet well-designed thank you card. Personally, I think it takes it up a notch to being remarkable and all it cost them was a little time and creativity.
Consider how we can add that human touch to our own materials. Sometimes all it takes is interjecting a little conversational humor.
By day, I work for a high end grocery store in southern California and we receive all sorts of products that come in to be photographed for our ads. One product was this Planters mixed nut bag that had us all in the office laughing our faces off!
Obviously, they were going for more of an artistic look, showing just some elements of Mr. Peanut. I’ll tell you though, the first time I looked at it I thought to myself, “This looks like a crime scene!” Maybe it’s just me, but I fought the urge to draw in a monocle just for completeness. Or maybe he was robbed at nutcracker-point for his monocle. I just don’t know.
Anyhow, there is a lesson to be learned here: look at your concepts and ideas from every possible angle and have others give you feedback on it as well before you finalize anything in print. Jussayin’.
I was reading The Magic Newswire and came across this post about The Magic Circle preparing to sue EU over forced changes to playing cards. Since this revolves around the design of playing cards, I thought it would be an appropriate post.
Read the full story here for a great laugh!
Okay, here goes. What’s with magicians and mullets? For a while there, it seemed like you couldn’t perform magic unless you had a nice luxurious mane of mullet! And we wonder why magicians aren’t taken seriously.
Personally, I think the mullet single-handedly sabotaged public opinion of magic. Mullets are, as you know, alive and have their own evil agendas. They seep into the heads of their wearers and turn the brains to mush. At least that’s what my grandmother said…or maybe that was TV, I can’t remember. I was too busy watching the tube, but that’s not important right now. Mullets are what’s important right now.
As I was looking for photos of magicians with mullets on Google, I thought that having one was a requirement to work Vegas, but then I couldn’t find a photo of Lance except one, below, with a phantom mullet. (Perhaps somebody can find one and post it in the comments.)
Anyhow, here are some of the photos I found…for your viewing pleasure. Read the rest of this entry »
Some of you may know that I’ve been running another blog of Magician Humor called “Stuff Magicians Like.” For now it makes more sense for me not to spread out my writing efforts over multiple blogs. Besides, I think that these little interjections of humor will add nice contrast to the “seriousness” of graphic design and branding.
I’ve already imported them and you will see them if you go back in my posts or view the “Stuff Magicians Like” category.
So there you are. You’re waiting in line at the bank and someone walks in behind you. You glance up briefly, just long enough to notice that his shirt features an Ace of Spades. Your inner dialog begins and it might go a little like this:
“This is the perfect! I just happen to have some cards here. I have to perform a trick for this guy and it has to end with his chosen card being the card that he’s wearing. It has be a little elaborate though, so as not to make it obvious. Maybe I’ll do an ambitious card, then have the kicker be that he knew what card he would choose today. Or maybe I’ll…” Of course, by the time you decide what you’re going to do, you’re called up to the next available teller and your chance is shot.
I think we’ve all been in this scenario. The card is usually an Ace or a Joker. The coolness factor increases, though, if you notice that that they have a tattoo of a card. Then you can add some jokes to the mix, like, “I see you’re on the patch. I should get on it too, I’m up to a pack a day.” Whatever you do is sure to be a memorable moment for the unsuspecting spectator.
I’m not quite sure where I was going with this post, but I can almost guarantee that you’ll be keeping your eyes peeled now for “potential forces.”
Magicians might seem like they are the most vain people on earth. We always have to stop to look in a mirror.
The truth is, however, we’re not checking out our reflections to see how good we may or may not look. We’re actually checking out our pass, our retention vanish or our top change. It’s true and no magician is immune to it. We’re always practicing, always palming, always working on a move so a mirror that just happens to show up is a great convenience.
Oh, and it doesn’t have to be a proper mirror either. We’ll work with any reflective surface we can find. Car window? No problem! Blank TV screen? No problem! Sunglasses of a motorcycle highway patrolman? No problem! …okay, that last one might pose a little bit of a problem, but you get the idea.
There’s all kinds of mirrors out there, go out into the world and find em!
I think that we’re all guilty of this one. How many times have you been out with friends and you suddenly realize that you’re palming something without even noticing? The most common form of this is back palming your movie tickets. In more advanced cases you might find yourself classic palming random small objects like pen caps, bottle caps, SD cards or buttons (while still attached to your clothes).
It’s not difficult to see how this happens; in fact it’s surprising that it isn’t more widespread. We train our hands over and over and over and over again to learn certain moves so that we don’t have to think of doing them in the middle of a performance. That’s where the problem lies. We don’t even have to think about the moves; they think about themselves. It’s like they become their own entity, completely independent of us. This is where we can get into trouble. We could be at a store and “accidentally” palm a pack of gum and not even realize it until we get out the door with our other purchases. Oops!
Other “independent entities” to look out for are: spinning your cell phone or iPod like you would a card, squaring a stack of papers like you would a deck, and practicing wand spins with a pencil.
All I’m saying is…just be careful out there. Okay?
I’m sure we’ve all heard the saying “It’s not what we know but who we know!” Therefore it’s always impressive when we mention a famous magician we might be acquainted with, whomever it may be or however well we may (or may not) know them. We always try to make it sound as impressive as possible, yet still nonchalant. It might go something like this: “I had lunch with David yesterday. He wanted to run something he’s working on by me.” Your friend says, “David? David who?” To which you reply, “Oh, Williamson. Sorry.” I mean, what other David could it be? Well, there’s Regal, Blaine… it couldn’t be Copperfield, could it?
We always do it by just using their first name, too. Yup, first name basis, my friends. That way when someone inquires, we make it seem like they should have known all along. “Jack gave me a call. He wanted to know if I could do a week at the Castle.” Or “I got an email from Michael. He’s doing a strolling gig in a couple weeks and needed another magician.” Very off the cuff, yet impressive.
Anyhow, I have to get going. Kostya just called me and I think he wants to talk about some design…
OK, so I wanted to name this post with just one word, but I guess I’m not creative or clever enough. It is really funny though to see the current trend of people naming tricks they publish using just one word.
So what do we have? Pressure. Thread. Stigmata. Sinful… Look no further than those who have work on Theory11. It seems to be an epidemic that’s effected everyone including even the likes of Jay Sankey! “Poor guy” has tricks called Insider, Lockdown, Descendant, Dough and Earplugs. All. One. Word. Each.
I wonder what it is. It does seem to create a feeling of mystery and intrigue, both very interesting traits to a magician. Could we be helpless against their power? I know that I own more than a few of these one-word-tricks.
Perhaps you’re not cool enough if you haven’t put one of these out. Better yet, your coolness factor goes up a notch if you release more than one! Look at Wayne Houchin and Danny Garcia. They have multiple ones out and look how cool they are! I guess the race is on to see who can turn their coolness up to T11. Wayne and Danny are head-to-head with Mr. Sankey hot on their heels! Go! Go! Go! (My money is on Wayne.)
Now if only I could come up with that one-word-title for this post…