Friday, May 30, 2014

More Steampunk Magic Props

I have been feverishly working to get new props built and old ones refurbished for my upcoming tour that starts soon (in days). I've attached two images for you to enjoy. The top photo is a refurbished prop that I call 'The Temporal Generator'. This is a rather clever device, whatever is placed inside can be instantly sent back in time or ahead in time. To prove it, I borrow a shoe, place it into the box and send it back in time. Then moments later I bring it back, but apparently something goes wrong and a different shoe ends up in it's place. The borrowed shoe then is discovered in an impossible place with a note from the past!

The next is a neck stock for a routine which was a Sword Thru the Neck Illusion. I won't be using a
sword, but I will have a long metal device that will go into the stocks while someone wears it. The device came out splendidly.

The real difference between the two props is that first one, the Temporal Generator, has lights and sound effects. The Neck stock has no lights or sound effects but you see the magic as it happens. Whereas in the first routine, the magic moment is somewhat delayed. So both have something unique about them and both should be wonderful additions to The Steampunk Illusionist Show.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Refurbishing Props for the Steampunk Magic Show

I love the DIY aspect of steampunk. For the new show, I've taken a number of props and redone them in a different style. Some are very steampunk, some are just Victorian. The first is a rectangular box which holds a wooden die. The original effect came out back in the 1860s. But for whatever reason, a lot of the boxes are poorly decorated and often very cheesy.

The one I had was black with some sort of Asian motif stenciled on in gold. The die that was with it was silver. In a word, it was awful. I decided that in order to even consider using it, I'd have to redo the whole thing, which meant stripping all the paint off the box and the die. Thankfully, underneath all the paint was actual wood. Once I had it all sanded down I then stained it. There were some unusual imperfections in the wood grain that gave a really wild look to one of the doors and the back of the prop.

The stain made a huge difference in the appearance. But the silver die would not do, so I decided to paint that an off white, actually an antique white color. The new die color went perfectly with the new color of the box. When I put it all back together, it looked so much better. I did have one issue, the dots on the die. I used a paper black paper dot, but I didn't have enough to finish the whole die. I couldn't seem to find any dots at Office Depot or Staples or Walmart or anywhere. Thankfully a search only turned up black vinyl dots, perfect!

I also ordered a couple other accessories, handles and feet for the box. I knew these would help to punch up the look even more. Though I wasn't going for a steampunk look, I did want a Victorian look to the box. The final result can be seen below. It really wasn't difficult at all to completely change the look of this prop.

I'm currently working on another piece that I will be steampunking. When it's finished I'll post the before, during and after photos here.