Society has seen a big shift in the way that we learn information today. It is no big wonder that magic is following the same shift.
Back in the day information used to be transferred through the written medium. However, today we watch a lot of videos for information.
If you are a beginning magician and you are watching YouTube videos you will notice that all the bigger magic YouTubers tell you that you should go and read books.
I´m not here to tell you that you should read books. I´m only here to tell you why it is wise to read books.
Especially for magic.
In the book “Our Magic” by Maskelyne and Devant they describe that there are 3 forms of art:
Higher art being art that is completely original and created from the mind of the artist imitating an image from the artists' mind.
Normal art being imitation from something already existing with a personal and creative twist to it.
And false art being the imitation of something already existent exactly as it is.
Higher art would be the performance of a completely new and original effect.
Normal art would be the performance of a routine or effect created by someone else but, with your own story and presentational ideas to it. Sometimes also some small alterations to the handling to suit you better
False art would be the performance of a routine or effect exactly as you have seen someone else do it. Same plot, same style of script, same everything.
When we are performing magic it is best for it to be at least at the level of normal art. Performing magic in such a way where it has an original feel to it and where the script is personal.
If you are reading magic books you are more likely to train your creative muscle. It is easier to think of a fun and creative way to present the effect, a way that would suit you.
However, if you start to learn magic from DVDs and videos you are more likely to copy the magician that is explaining the effect to you, or at least to be influenced by it.
For the sake of creativity and normal art I dare you to start reading more books and come up with new, clever and fun presentations that will make your magic unique.