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Magic and Illusion

as a hobby

AKA: Prestidigitation.

Magic forces you to learn about storytelling, assumptions, about the way we perceive the world. You must be empathetic. You must try to see yourself through another person’s eyes. And I think you have to simply say That one of the that makes life worth living Is giving other people joy.

Penn Jillette, American Magician

Magic & illusion is a captivating hobby that combines art, science, and performance. It’s a great way to improve manual dexterity, understanding of human psychology, and public speaking skills. You can start by learning simple card and coin tricks, reading magic books, or taking online courses. Remember, practice is key, and even the simplest trick can be magical with the right presentation. Enjoy your magical journey!

Helpful content to start magic and illusion as a hobby

We aim to provide accurate information, but errors might be found. Always exercise judgment and discretion.

📼 Videos

Short visual inspiration.

YouTube | Top 10 BEST Magic Tricks EVER Performed on Got Talent!
Top 10 BEST Magic Tricks EVER Performed on Got Talent!
YouTube | Zach King’s Best Magic Videos of 2022
Zach King's Best Magic Videos of 2022
YouTube | Easy Magic Tricks Anyone Can Do!
Easy Magic Tricks Anyone Can Do!

🎙️ Podcasts

Play an episode while exploring the page.

Spotify | Magical Thinking
Spotify Embed: Magical Thinking
Spotify | The Magicians' Podcast Network
Spotify Embed: The Magicians' Podcast Network
Spotify | The Magic Podcast
Spotify Embed: The Magic Podcast
Spotify | The Magic Detective Podcast
Spotify Embed: The Magic Detective Podcast
Spotify | Magicians Talking Magic
Spotify Embed: Magicians Talking Magic
Spotify | The Magic Newswire
Spotify Embed: The Magic Newswire
Spotify | The Magician's Advice Podcast
Spotify Embed: The Magician's Advice Podcast
Spotify | The Talk Magic Podcast With Craig Petty
Spotify Embed: The Talk Magic Podcast With Craig Petty

The cup-and-balls illusion, one of the oldest confirmed accounts of stage magic, is at least 2000 years old.

📜 Terms

Basic lingo for orientation.

  • Confederate: In magic, a confederate refers to a person who is planted in the audience who conspires with the magician to perform an illusion. They are also known as plants, stooges, or shills. They might be present to distract the audience, or to participate in some phase of the trick.
  • Misdirection: This is the foundation of magic. Misdirection is the ability to get the audience to look at something else while you make a secret move. Without misdirection many of your secrets would be revealed. Controlling misdirection allows you to control the audience, and it can take many forms. Misdirection may involve movement, conversation, or even humor.
  • Patter: Patter is the story that a magician tells. It’s the lead-up to the trick. Having patter that is engaging is also a form of misdirection. It will keep your audience concentrating on what you say rather than just watching what you do. It can take many forms like instruction, or it may be posed as a question to the audience.
  • Utility Prop: A utility prop is a hard working magic prop that can be used in more than one routine. A length of rope, or a hat are both good examples of utility props because you can use them time and time again.
  • Moment of Magic: After the lead-up, and the storytelling, and the setting of the scene, the moment of magic is when the cool stuff happens. The moment of magic is when things levitate, or disappear, or morph into something else. It’s also when the audience tends to gasp, or react. For both the audience and the magician, the moment of magic is the best part.
  • Self Working Trick: These are tricks that are easy to perform because they require no skill from the magician. That is no skill other than practice and stage presence. These tricks might employ a gimmick prop like a jacket with a secret compartment or a loaded die.
  • Flashing: Just like in the real world, flashing in magic is not a good thing. It happens when a magician accidentally shows off something that is meant to stay hidden. You might drop a coin that was supposed to stay hidden, or reveal a secret door.

How to start magic and illusion as a hobby

First moves for getting acquainted and breaking the ice.

  • Choose a basic trick that catches your eye, from YouTube, a website or an app. It doesn’t have to be spectacular.
  • Practice it until you perform it perfectly and effortlessly.
  • Then, after getting a first grip in magic, come back here and review our resources for making some more magic.

📚 Books

Get read-y.

Illusions help us understand the rules our brain uses to create reality, based on the input it receives from our senses.

🪜 How-tos

Step-by-step tutorials.

📄 Articles

Further reading.

🌐 Websites

Go-tos for information.

Learning basic principles of magic is like learning chords on a guitar. Once you know a few simple principles you can build your whole magic routine.

Penn Jillette, American Magician

🍿 Movies

Nothing like a film for inspiration.

YouTube | The Prestige (2006) Trailer #1 | Movieclips Classic Trailers
The Prestige (2006) Trailer #1 | Movieclips Classic Trailers
YouTube | The Illusionist | Official Trailer (2010)
The Illusionist | Official Trailer (2010)


Get a clue.

Is magic & illusion a hobby?

Yes, magic & illusion can be a fascinating hobby. It involves learning and performing tricks that deceive the senses, creating a sense of wonder and amazement.

What basic skills do I need to start learning magic?

Basic skills include manual dexterity, understanding of human psychology, and a flair for performance and entertainment.

How much time do I need to dedicate to magic?

The time commitment can vary widely. Some tricks can be learned in a few minutes, while others may take weeks or even months of practice.

What kind of magic tricks are suitable for beginners?

Card tricks, coin tricks, and simple illusions are usually good starting points for beginners.

Do I need to buy expensive equipment to start learning magic?

No, many magic tricks can be performed with common household items. Some tricks may even require no props at all. As you progress, you may choose to invest in professional magic props.

Can I learn magic at any age?

Yes, magic can be learned at any age. It’s a great hobby for both children and adults.

Where can I learn magic tricks?

There are many resources available, including magic books, online tutorials, and magic clubs. You can also get creative and invent your own new tricks.

Can magic help improve my public speaking skills?

Yes, performing magic often involves speaking in front of an audience, which can help improve your public speaking skills.

Is magic a solitary hobby or can it be social?

Magic can be both. You can practice alone, but the ultimate goal is usually to perform for others, making it a very social hobby.

📱 Apps

Smart assistance.

YouTube | Get the Free 52Kards APP
Get the Free 52Kards APP

Our brain does not sense the world in absolutes; instead, it compares the sum of all parts of what it perceives and filters out information it doesn’t think is important.

📦 Products

Essentials to have.

🎓 Courses

Get smart.

📍 Near You

Get together.

The oldest known English language book on magic, “The Discoverie of Witchcraft”, was written by Reginald Scot in 1584.

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💡 Tips

Additional advice for beginners.