Welcome to Card Magic

If you’ve recently decided to get serious about close-up card magic, here’s a tip that may make you a little angry. You’ll thank me one day.

Don’t Practice with a close-up pad!


dean mat

photo by Jason Dean


When my teachers first gave me this advice, I was about 18 years old. At the time, I loved my close-up pad and carried it everywhere. I broke it out all the time –either to do a few tricks or just to practice.  Not only did it make my magic look more “professional”, it made a lot of handling, like shuffling the cards, much easier to perform.

I trusted my teachers, generally speaking, but even so, I put up a fight. After all, if I was faced with a glass table, I could barely even pick up the deck. It took me a few months to finally get the point.


Real sleight of hand under any conditions

One of the most seductive aspects card magic is the promise of real miracles, done any time, anywhere and with any deck of cards.  It only took a year or so (maybe two) to learn how to handle cards effectively on a hard service.

Since that time I sometimes use a close-up pad in performance, but I never have to fear performing because I don’t have a close-up pad and can’t work without one. It’s a feeling of comfort you’ll always appreciate.

The campers at Sorcerer’s Safari learn these important lessons much younger than I did. It’s an awesome thing to see. One morning last August, just a few days into camp, I opened my cabin door one morning to find a gift from one of

the campers – a photo of the gift appears at the top of this post.

I was so proud I nearly cried.


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