Every Magician has a story of how they got into Magic and if you look at it, we all started the same way. Something was shown to us for the very first time, and the explanation? IT WAS MAGIC!  When I was little, my Uncle John made a coin disappear and made it come out of my ear. He then put it on his right hand and made it reappear on his left hand. I've never seen anything like that up close! Sleep overs, Transformers, Atari, nothing can compare with MAGIC - making things disappear and reappear, that's cool! Of course later on, came the bad news - I find out there's no such thing as Magic, it was just a trick. No matter how many times I said the Magic word, that coin was not going to disappear. My Uncle John then explained to me that It only looked like the coin disappeared and showed me how he really did it. From then on I wanted to learn more. I started just like everyone else, Magic kits that had the 3 shell game and the Rice Bowls, the Money Maker, trick decks, the Professor's nightmare rope trick, hanging out at the local Magic Shop for hours, anything involving Magic when we were kids I've experienced.

     By the time High School came along, I've gained quite a bit. I've already made up some originals, I knew a bunch of sleights and I was good enough that if another Magician showed me a card trick I was able to pick out the moves and figure out how it was done. This is when first I met Darren Martinue, my Freshman year we had Art class together. We sat on the same table so he would always see me play with a deck of cards. Then one day, he finally asked me to show him a card trick, he was blown away of course, lol - and the rest you can pretty much figure out. It then occurred to me, just like with my Uncle John, I was now in that same situation. Darren was serious about wanting to get into Magic and I was now in a position where I can pass down what I knew, just like my uncle John did.

     Several years passed and I did a lot of moving. I went to College in Arizona for Graphic Arts and taking that route as a career, got involved in relationships, did some bad stuff that I shouldn't get into, and so on. Magic sort of just faded in the background, but I would still pick up a deck of cards to mess around with and occasionally show friends a trick or two. It's like riding a bike, once you learn, you'll never forget. One day I decided to track down Darren to see how he was and when I did, to my surprise, he was doing the same thing when I left, Magic. He was doing convention shows, worked as a demonstrator for Geno at Magic Masters, got signed with a production company - he was doing what he loved - MAGIC! Right around this time David Blaine came into the picture. Close up Magic was getting recognized more than ever worldwide. The style of Magic I was doing several years ago, was just now surfacing and getting so much attention that if not equal, was surpassing the traditional stage Magic.

     I now had a VERY good reason to get back into Magic - not because of David Blaine, but because of Darren. Don't get me wrong, I like performing. That feeling we all get from the Spectator's reaction after blowing them away. Magicians too, when you reel them in only to burn them in the end - that's the best! However, when I look at the whole picture, I think I'm more involved when I'm teaching Magic. After Darren there were a couple others who I personally taught. I had the same satisfaction, that same feeling knowing I got somebody to start into Magic. Back in High School, we would hear that teachers were never making enough money - and still to this day it's true, look at what they deal with! We all thought, if they're so smart with what they're teaching us, why don't they use that to get a better job. Well I found out the answer on my own, simply because I LOVE to teach.

     When you first start out with Close up Magic, you want to learn as much as you can. You're buying everything at Magic shops and online, EVERYTHING you can get your hands on. There's going to be a point in time where you feel like you're done. You've learned everything there is to know, trick decks, thumb tips, Scotch and Soda, etc. In reality, you just think you've learned it all and may have gained all the knowledge but you've yet to experience the wisdom. I don't claim to know it all but I know enough. Enough to know of why you're here. This is the next level - pass the Gimmicks and Gaffs... Sleight of Hand. If you're seriously committed to this type of Magic, you're in the right place. For those of you who were there when I first started sleightofhandmagic.com, you knew what my main goal was. I wanted to start a website  and contribute to the art of technical Sleight of Hand Card Magic by sharing the knowledge I've gained throughout the years.

You will learn to entertain and mystify with a deck of cards using the element of surprise, deception, manipulation and misdirection to guide what their eyes see, what their ears hear and their mind to believe the impossible.

"it looks more like true magic."

Close Up Sleight of Hand Card Magic is performed by so few Magicians because they are difficult to learn. It takes a lot of practice, discipline, and patience. There are however advantages to learning this type of Magic. One advantage is that you're always ready, all you need is a normal deck of cards. Also, while you're performing, to the audience it looks more like true Magic. As for the main advantage, since you're not using Gimmicks or Gaffs, both Spectators and Magicians will hold you in great respect for having the determination of learning Card Magic at it's purest - Sleight of Hand.

"This takes training and training takes time."

Now when you first learn Sleight of Hand, your first big worry is that you try the sleights and they don't work. Your hands are too big, or too small, or the cards just don't move right, or won't stay where it should and falls on the floor. The problem with doing the move isn't really that your hands are too big or small. It's that you have to use different muscles than you have used before, or use the same muscles in different ways. This takes training, and training takes time.

"the dedication you spent was worth it."

The truth of the matter is, no one can do most Sleight of Hand and Manipulation moves the first time. But if you keep trying, you'll eventually be able to do it, maybe even only 1 time out of 10, but you'll be able to do it. And if you keep practicing, your chances of doing it successfully will increase, until you can do it correctly and successfully each time. Now you won't find true satisfaction from just practicing nor from audience reaction, but through the feeling you get inside after you realize that the dedication you spent was worth it.