Sorry, but no other title for this one. The principle is interesting. Another version of the signed folded card. This time a nice switch. Let me explain a basic switch first along with the principle. You will need a small tea sieve. Take a playing card, fold it into quarters, and fix it onto a piece of cardboard. Now using flat black spray-paint, spray the underside of the card black. Place this card into the tea sieve (I prefer to actually glue it there) so that its corners lock into the mesh of the sieve.
The unsprayed side of the card should be visible when you hold the tea sieve in the way shown in the photo. What I discovered was that when you turn the tea sieve down, due to the black art principle (and of course when you wear something dark or black), the card can’t be seen anymore. This applies even to when you place the tea sieve onto a dark surface.
For this, you need a duplicate (unprepared) folded card. I assume you are using this in a routine with a signed card (Ambitious card or something else) where you do the Mercury Card Fold to arrive in the position for the switch.
By the way: the best and (for me) most convincing Mercury card Fold that really works without detection in real performance is that of t Cody Fisher. Check out his handling of the Mercury card Fold (he calls it the „Mercury Sleeve Fold”) on his upcoming DVD produced by Magikraft Studios. It’s really great and, in my opinion, worth alone for the working performer the price of the whole DVD!
I hold the tea sieve in my left hand and have the folded card in a finger palm position in the right. Both hands are about waist height. Two actions now happen simultaneously: the left hand turns the tea sieve, and the right hand opens at the same time, letting its palmed card fall onto the table. In unison, the illusion of the card coming from the tea sieve is perfect. In one fluent motion, the left hand places the tea sieve in a sort of “face-down” position onto the mat. The pictures show the switch clearly.
A little thinking will open your eyes for all the possibilities. To get you started, I would like to describe a little routine, which was born in a late-night session with Braco from Berlin (who by the way is very fond of the switch). Braco suggested (naturally) doing something with tea to motivate the tea sieve, so here is what I came up with to answer his challenge. Here is the effect:
The performer has a tea glass on the table. On top of the glass rests a tea sieve with a folded slip of paper and a tea bag in it. A spectator chosen from a tea menu card one tea brand out of a dozen or so. The performer cleanly pours the contents of the tea sieve onto the table. On the folded slip of paper is written the spectator’s choice of tea!
The tea sieve, a tea bag, folded slips of coloured paper and a tea menu card, which is actually the disguise for a billet index (the indexed billets are in compartments at the back of the tea card). You can make the index as big as possible, but I think 24 different brands of tea are enough. The beauty of this index is that whilst the spectator is looking at the tea menu card, you are naturally looking at the back at the index! A dummy billet which is spray painted at the back is glued into the tea sieve and the tea bag placed on top of it. Thus you are ready for the performance.
Show the tea glass with the tea sieve and its contents. Then take the menu and let a spectator pick his choice. Due to the index behind it is an easy matter to pull the appropriate billet into the finger palm of either hand (it’s easy to learn the switch with both hands, which makes for an easier handling of the index). Once you have the billet ready for the switch, pick up the tea sieve and perform the switch exactly like you did with the card. All done!