Becoming a master magician looks like it should be a straight line going from a beginning point A to mastery of magic at point B. As comedian Dimitri Martin shows us in the picture above, success as a magician is much more of a wiggly path than a direct one.
As magicians, it’s easy to assume that the path to becoming a master magician is direct. We like to think it’s a straight line because it’s clear and straightforward. It makes success seem reachable and direct, but reality doesn’t work like that. The messy, twisty line may be a mess, and hard to work through, but it shows us the failure, setbacks, dead end magic tricks, bad practice techniques, and all the mistakes that slow us down in the process of becoming a master magician.
Most magicians learn their trade from other magicians. We watch magic DVD’s and read magic books teaching us the magic tricks that have worked well for others. The magic DVD’s and books only show us the success’s other magicians have had. We don’t find out about the years of work that lead nowhere. The mistakes, missed opportunities and failures, every magician has experiences. Problems other magicians have faced tend to be kept private, so the journey to success seems to be a straight line.
This editing of success is fine for learning techniques. After all, it’s crucial to copy good technique and avoid mistakes or poor examples. However, as magicians, we run the risk of becoming disheartened by our own, slower progress. It’s easy to feel that we are not as good as other magicians because we see all the mistakes we make during the learning process. We are aware of every imperfection of our technique. Our honest, critical view of our own abilities can’t compete with the edited perfection of magic presented by a master magician in a magic video or book.
This is exactly the reason why many people suggest that women shouldn’t read beauty magazines if they want to be happy. The readers are presented with an unrealistic version of reality that can make the reader feel unhappy with themselves. The same magazines, often suggest commercial solutions to the problems that they create. As a magician, it’s easy to see, all the successful master magicians teaching magic, and feel that you are not as good as them.
However you define your journey learning magic, expect a messy – but in the end, wonderful adventure.
Don’t compare yourself to hundreds of different magicians showing you their best magic tricks. Compare yourself to your previous abilities, and race YOURSELF to improve. You only have to ensure you are better that you were in the past, consistently over time, to become a master magician.