TFP.AH - Magic and the Tenth Floor

"I am a great admirer of mystery and magic. Look at this life - all mystery and magic."

- Harry Houdini

Last night I was invited to take photos for a quite spectacular magician - Tim Licata.

Tim provides services to private events such as weddings and functions, but it doesn't end there. He is the resident magician at the Joker and the Thief on Leith Walk, Revolution on Chambers Street, and the Pear Tree on West Nicholson Street.

I really didn't know what to expect from a shoot like this, but I knew what I was aiming for:

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The way Tim works it is that a little stand is put on your table that looks like this:

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The idea is that you turn the cards around if you want to see some magic. This allows the customer to choose (unlike when I was at quite a sensitive and important business meeting and the quiz master slammed his quiz sheets down on my notes and documents!)

Once the cards are inverted, the magic begins. It's so close and intimate. I used flash, but didn't want to distract too much, although that proved to be quite difficult. I shot at 24mm due to the tightness of the space, as I would be too far away at 50mm.

This type of photography is so weird. You stand there, eye pressed to the viewfinder, just waiting for that one moment. The reaction when the magic happens.

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It proved not to be as easy as that though. As I'm standing there, waiting for the response, I picked up on just how truly brilliant the events before me were. I missed moments because I had to lower my camera just to actually take in what was going on. I was in awe. Cards appearing in wallets, appearing in mouths, balls multiplying in front of my eyes. It was incredible, and such great fun.

I've seen magic before on the street, and at the Edinburgh festival, but nothing like what Tim can accomplish. He really is a master, and it felt like, well, magic.

Anyone who has hosted a party or wedding and not hired this guy is missing out. Big time.

I'm looking forward to working with Tim again as that was such good fun, and the photos reflect the mood I was in.

Here are the final shots: