Picto Transpo 2

Gene's update on Picto Transpo. After decades of performing Picto Transpo, I began manufacturing some for sale in 2006. Since then I made and sold three times more than I ever planned to, or even wanted to. I declared a hiatus on Picto production in order to finish The Book, and I'm completely out of inventory. But here's a good idea for you: the 19-page Picto Transpo chapter in The Book has 54 photos and illustrations, and it describes exactly how to make your own Picto Transpo. So do it!

With that being said, will I ever get back into Picto Transpo production? Probably, and I set November 2016 as a target date. But it will depend on confirmed interest. If you think you would purchase a Picto Transpo, e-mail me and I'll add you to my list. That's not a commitment, just an honest and strong possibility. If I gather sufficient buyer interest, I will do a production run in November. Simple as that.

Now, here's what Picto Transpo is all about:

See Picto Transpo in Action!
(Windows Media (3MB) | Windows Media (1MB) | QuickTime (600k))

[Photo: Picto Transpo]

EFFECT: The performer draws a humorous caricature of a spectator and the spectator draws one of the performer. Each signs his/her name on the back of the picture frames and they are openly placed into envelopes held by the artists. To make it clear that nothing has happened (yet), the performer removes his frame from his envelope and shows both his drawing and his signature. He replaces his frame in the envelope, and with a magic word the pictures change places. He immediately withdraws her drawing from his envelope, while she withdraws his from hers. The routine is entertaining throughout and baffling at the finish.

The drawings can be individualized and are easily adapted for holidays or special events. I find it's a particularly nice effect for a male performer to use involving a female spectator: it's novel, non-threatening, funny and ends with strong magic. In my show it is always in second position, and the first time I involve somebody from the audience. The reason is it establishes how I treat guests on stage: with dignity and respect. That doesn't mean we don't have fun together, but not at their expense. The routine is both fun and a fooler, and it subtly establishes the norms of conduct for both my audience assistants and me.

THE PROPS look like normal articles - not special magic apparatus - and something you could probably buy at any office supply store. In reality this is an updated slate effect, and my original version used posterboard in picture frames. I performed the posterboard version for almost 30 years. Many magicians who saw me lecture or perform inquired about using dry erase whiteboards, but dry erase materials do not work for Picto Transpo: the writing must be "permanent" (removable, but not by rubbing). Picto Transpo 1 used a Teflon sheet for the writing surfaces. That product was a breakthrough for me and for many happy customers over a five year period. Then suddenly...product failure. The Teflon sheet producer was acquired by another company and the product was altered. Bottom line: for Picto Transpo purposes an acceptable Teflon sheet product is no longer available. A nine month search and extensive evaluations finally revealed an alternative surface material , a film laminate, with many superior technical properties. Permanent markers almost glow on its surface, the marks don't rub off, and yet they are readily removed with ethanol, an environmentally friendly solvent. The result is a truly excellent product. Click here for specifications.

INSTRUCTIONS are another point of personal pride. A six-person crew spent over eight hours filming me in action before editing it all to a 34-minute instructional DVD. The DVD is the original one for Picto Transpo; there are very few changes for Picto Transpo 2. Any changes are explained on the eight full (packed!) pages of written instructions for Picto Transpo 2. The instructions include every nuance of the preparation and handling as well as my personal performance routine.

Picto Transpo 2
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