Tuesday, April 30, 2013

New photos from Jason Verschoor

Quick update here - thought I'd show off the new promo photos I had taken recently by photographer Jason Verschoor. Some wonderful images here! The Japanese fellow in some of the shots is magician Atsushi Ono, my occasional performing partner.


Saturday, April 27, 2013

Matryoshka dolls

I had an idea a while ago for a magic routine for my Cabinet of Curiosities show involving matryoshka dolls. It turns out you can buy blank unpainted doll sets so I ordered a few and set about designing and painting them. I went through a bunch of different options - composers, artists, a melting sequence of cyborg dolls - before settling on silent movie comedians. Yes, it was tempting to go for the pop-culture Star Wars theme but I restrained myself. Barely.

Buster Keaton was always my favourite when I was younger so he got to be the biggest. Now that I remember it, for my stag party we rented a 16mm film projector and got some old celluloid film reels for the night that included Buster Keaton ("Cops") and the Wombles. Ah, good times.

After Keaton, then Chaplin, Marx, Laurel and Hardy, and finally Fatty Arbuckle and Harold Lloyd. Yes, Lloyd did that iconic hanging-from-the-clock-tower scene but he was never my favourite. Too many sports-related bits, perhaps. Not sure.

So here are a few photos of the finished set.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Gozinta Boxes

In two months' time I'll be doing a pair of shows at the Glenbow Museum in Calgary (why, 1pm, I believe! Certainly, you'd be most welcome to come along). Family-friendly event on 22 and 23 June 2013 and - now here's the cool part - the reason I've been asked to do this is because the museum is having an MC Escher display for a couple of months and they want entertainment to dovetail with the theme of mathematical magic, optical illusions and perception.


I met with Ty Larner of the museum recently and that triggered a few ideas for the show. One was something I saw performed about 20 years ago called the Gozinta Boxes (or In and Outer Boxes). I'd forgotten all about them and hadn't actually seen anyone do them since then so I looked them up on Youtube (bless Youtube), figured out how they were meant to work, drew up a plan on a scrap of paper and spent yesterday afternoon building a set.

Here's the result! Not yet sure exactly what the routine's going to be like for the show, but I've got the prop so I'm on my way to getting it performable.

And for no other reason than that I haven't posted rabbit photos in a while, here's a little video clip from this afternoon. Augustus is just getting over a bout of GI stasis but he's pulling through and is finally wanting snacks again. We think his guts got completely blocked up with hair from grooming Snowdon. Rabbits usually don't get hairballs...but we got a model that does, it seems.