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Postby Peter Marucci » Sun Dec 16, 2007 1:41 pm



Simon Lovell said the same thing to me, only more succinctly:

"There are fetuses out there today writing books!"

cheers,
Peter Marucci
pmarucci@cogeco.ca

"Better a man honor his profession than be honored by it."
-- Robert-Houdin
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Postby JamesJoystick » Wed May 28, 2008 10:37 am

But who is Craig Browning?

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Postby Lenoir » Wed May 28, 2008 10:49 am

But who is Craig Browning?


An extremely experianced performer in many aspects of Mentalism and Illusions. And you are? :roll:

"I want to do magic...but I don't want to be referred to as a magician." - A layman chatting to me about magic.
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Postby JamesJoystick » Thu May 29, 2008 8:18 am

I'm nobody. But I didnt brag myself to be in the "big boy" league, so its kinda offtopic, anyways. I did quick search of Craig Browning, found one dodgy website and the second led me b ack here.

No offends, I just wanted to share my ignorance on this one. Plus I'm always cautious of namedroppers I havent never heard of.

But it's just probably me. :roll:

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Postby pcwells » Thu May 29, 2008 11:00 am

I think Craig is one of those people that's earned the right to brag. Not having your name in lights on the web isn't always a reliable measure of success or status in this business...

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Postby Craig Browning » Thu May 29, 2008 1:07 pm

Me thinks someone is trying to stir the pot on behalf of someone else given the "flavor" of the posts and the fact that they revived such an old thread.

If you did a Google on me I know for a fact that you'll find more than a "Dodgy" web site in that I'm one of the more prolific people in this business. Secondly, my web site isn't up right now because I've been forced into a quasi-mode of retirement... so why should I be paying to keep up an advertisement?

I'm quite aware of the antics of a certain individual who, for the past two+ years, has been planting doubt in people's minds and painting me in a very ugly way. For some reason the fantasy that he can destroy me and the public image I have on these forums does better for this child than Viagra does for others. My most recent dealings with him bringing about an amazing outpouring of support for me from numerous sources big and small. Most of whom suggested that I simply ignore such little green monsters and move on; pointing out to me that they are impotent where it counts.

There is absolutely no reason why I or anyone on this or any other forum should be put in the position of having to defend who and what they are or "claim" to be unless there are valid legal issues afoot in which people have been harmed in cruel ways that bring about irrevocable damage or similar problems within the forum itself. For me the facts are quite simple and well spelled out to those in the know, who are the only peer group I really need to answer to. My bet being that you and others like you, who want to single me out and say that I'm a "Nobody" or at minimum, create doubt as to who I may be, have never heard of Kirk Kirkham (my mentor) let alone Will Rock (his mentor) or Lee Grabel (the man who controlled the alternate side of the "legacy")... I can list a few dozen other folks you've probably never heard of and will not readily find data on when searching the web and yet, they are keystones to this craft. Thus, in the long run, the pettiness folks of your bend reveals only how much you really don't know, and just how small you really can be.

So the bottom lines are relatively simple; you and the one tugging at your leash and trying to instigate a problem here, need to get a life in that these antics are running dangerously close to the legal definition of Harassment, Stalking and Liable... it must come to an end sooner than soon. Which requires those involved to GROW UP and put their jealousy and envy away. Oh... and don't deny the fact that there isn't a certain couple of someone's tugging at your chain, I can smell it and I believe the couple who've chimed in on my defense, smell it as well.

The Facts are quite simple; from the days when I was six and seven years of age I've done magic. I got my first professional gigs at age 9 which I retained for a period of five years. It was no high profile type of thing and though I use the word "Prodigy" when I talk about it, I can see where that may be misconstrewn in the minds of some... my fubar. Nonetheless, it's not a complete misrepresentation.

I have been credited as an effects designer/developer and illusion mechanic since my teen years but more notably so when I was working with the late Ken Whitaker and the early developing years of Creative Illusions. Sadly, Kens partner and I had a few conflicts of interest... his need for nose candy and my need to feed a family of 7; the result being my leaving said company under "ugly" circumstances... said partner however, destroyed the company image and his own position in the years following Ken's death due to an inability to deliver and then some. It's sad, in that Ken and I were able to develop a number of award winning effects systems during our short time together.

From 1981 and into the early 1990s I worked with and was the lead tech & warehouseman for Charles W. "Kirk" Kirkham who, in the summer of 1986 along with his wife Phyllis, gave me permission to call myself their successor and as such successor to one of the most coveted magic legacies in existence. Sadly, medical bills on their part as well as my own financial limitations, prevented us from transferring the estate in a formal manner as had been discussed. Much of the collection either going to the Robert Houdin Museum in Paris or private collections.

During this same era I was a techie and warehouseman for Abb Dickson working in the Blackstone production facility in Azusa, California. I likewise assisted several other acts of the day who were just beginning their climb up the proverbial ladder of public success i.e. Franz Harary, Dean Hankey, Nick Night, Kevin James and a small slew of others who, in that period, were just like many of you here... chums that shared an interest but were unknown for the most part. The only difference being that we all practically lived at the Magic Castle when placed us in the regular company of people like Shimada, Channing Pollock, Carol & Marvin Roy, etc.

There's a few minor gaps here and there but that's essentially my life well into the early days of our current century; the days of my own darkest hell -- having a complete mental & emotional snap as well as discovering the fact that I'd been living with more than a couple chronic illnesses for the greater part of my life. All of which knocked me off my feet (quite literally) and into a state of being semi-retired.

My transition from Major stage magic to Mentalism officially started in the early 90s when I was with Creative but can be traced much further back, to the summer of 1983 when I did my first pure mentalism act, which scared the hell out of me... long story... I side stepped that field for a while though it held of interest, not moving back into it full time until after a car accident in 1996 when I broke my neck and was more or less forced to deal with the fact that big heavy equipment and I just couldn't get along any longer.

This brief summary of my life & career is 110% provable and as best I can see, the same thing I've always claimed. Unlike what some have hinted at, I've never claimed to be some super star of magic nor have I ever stated that I was known all that well as a performer... a decent enough showman but a crappy businessman who was lucky enough to do a few hundred really big shows in his life... just never broke over the top and into the big leagues work wise... Always seen as an equal however, always welcomed into the circles of the working pros because I KNOW MY JOB as a technician and choreographer of magic... I'm not too shabby on the historical side of things either.

I've never denied that I'm a failure on certain levels; I know how to make money but I don't know how to manage it and thus, a business. Many, many "artist" types have this problem so I'm not that unique.

I've been honest in these forums about my drug abuse stage as well as my medical issues (mental/emotional as well as physical) e.g. I cannot understand why someone thinks I'm concealing things or trying to be abusive in any way with the membership here or elsewhere.

The only thing I've ever done is shared my experience as honestly and FREELY as I can in hope of helping others live out their dreams. For this I'm getting pi**ed on by a couple of envy filled egos who want to paint me in a darker light... one that don't exist.

I know I can be bullish at times and even dogmatic, but I really hope this is the last time I have to speak up and defend myself against this emerging cancer in that I've gotten more than sick and tired of it as I'm certain many of the members here have as well.

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Postby Lady of Mystery » Thu May 29, 2008 1:45 pm

To be honest Craig, you've got absolutly no reason to defend yourself, people like that are just wanting you to retaliate. You're much better off just ignoring them, they'll soon get bored and go away.

You may be a little opinionated at times, but anyone who's taken the time to read your posts will be able to clearly see that you know what you're talking about. You're a very valuable member of the forum and I for one have gained much from reading your posts.

Foodie chat and recipes at https://therosekitchen.wordpress.com/
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Postby Lenoir » Thu May 29, 2008 2:25 pm

There is absolutely no reason why I or anyone on this or any other forum should be put in the position of having to defend who and what they are or "claim" to be


That quote there, ends all discussion. Craig is a very talented individual who's talents have quite clearly made a large and lasting impression his field of expertise.

Pcwells puts it perfectly...
Not having your name in lights on the web isn't always a reliable measure of success or status in this business...


Jamesjoystick, maybe you've spent to much time looking for free tutorials on the net and not enough actual time immersed in the magical community. Magic is about entertaining, performing and creating the impossible right in peoples eyes, not having a big fancy website and a picture of yourself holding cards.

"I want to do magic...but I don't want to be referred to as a magician." - A layman chatting to me about magic.
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Postby pcwells » Thu May 29, 2008 6:37 pm

Wild Card wrote:Craig is a very talented individual who's talents have quite clearly made a large and lasting impression his field of expertise


And even if you don't want to believe Wild Card, you can trust me. I've got several good-looking websites.

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Postby JamesJoystick » Fri May 30, 2008 6:07 am

Ok, thanks for the info, Craig. I'm not on anyone's leash so that kinda paranoia aint necessery.
There are alot of people on the internet that boast their excellence, and I get sceptical of people I never heard of. Clearly you have done a long career on magic, and Im sorry if I offended you in anyway, but I also mentioned that probably it's just my ignorance. I still think its good to be sceptical, especially on the internet. You could be sceptical of me as well, if I had posted this topic, and you wouldnt never heard of me.

You had many good points on your first post on this topic, but I dont agree with all of them. I myself believe in free market, and I believe that people are smart enough to rather buy from the professionals, than 15 year old kids never heard of. Free market will take care of this 95% rubbish e-books.

People in their teens have really different state of mind, the productivity and naive sense of mind are controversial. They even could have some clever ideas, like with Jermay. I think he was 15 when he published "7 Deceptions"? If he wouldnt have the help of you and Knepper, would he ever publish the book if he had read this topic?


Wild Card wrote:Jamesjoystick, maybe you've spent to much time looking for free tutorials on the net and not enough actual time immersed in the magical community. Magic is about entertaining, performing and creating the impossible right in peoples eyes, not having a big fancy website and a picture of yourself holding cards.


Hmm. I dont look for free tutorials. I own pretty decent magic library, and few DVDs aswell. I dont even like to read ebooks at all. I'm soon to be 30 years old, and I might not now everything about magic, but I am very interested on magic's history, and own few books of the subject.

I think my passion, respect and love for magic is far nore serious that most people have. I dont intend to do magic as fulltime-job, it is too dear for that (even if I have done some corporate gigs), but I still think I can talk about the philosophy and theory of magic in general, even with the pros.

What comes to the website-thingey, I am very aware that you dont have to have website to be pro, but I also think that if you really are pro, there would be some information on the web. Not many laymen will know who is Johnny "Ace" Palmer, Lennart Green or Michael Close, but you still get heaps of stuff of them from the google if you do a search.

I didnt mean to offend anyone, and I'm truly sorry if I did that. My first post was just a simple question, nothing more than that. Carry on.

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Postby Craig Browning » Sat May 31, 2008 8:44 am

James, I accept and respect your apology and even agree that the net is rife with far too many Armchair experts (as I call them). This forum in particular has at least a half-dozen unknown famous people in it; individuals who, like myself, have been in the biz for decades and worked with some of the mega stars or in one case I'm aware of, marketed a few dozen simple tricks, yet most of us haven't a clue as to who they are or why certain folks lend to them a wide birth for the sake of honor and respect. In fact I'd say TalkMagic has had an exceptionally high share of such personalities.

My "Paranoia" comes from some very solid and ugly circumstances that have both haunted and hunted me for well over two years now; the antics of a couple of envious egos who wish to "expose" me for being a fraud and from what I've been shown by a handful of friends that have seen their "evidence"; well, most of it is more akin to pushing the extremes on things so as to create an issue that's non-extant... primarily because I do get a tad bit grand (as do most of us) when explaining my past. But as I said in the above, perhaps my use of words like "Prodigy" paint a different image in the mind of others vs. how I see and apply it e.g. maybe I need to re-evaluate and tone down the use of such terms a bit. But that doesn't mean that I've "Lied" or presented things in a way that creates gross deception.

Skepticism is healthy as is actual awareness on things. I'm presently dealing with a kid claiming ties to Howard Thurston. Yet he's not able to answer some very simple questions I have about Thurston's magic... equipment that I've actually worked with, on and had the pleasure of playing with over the years. There aren't many in our world who can claim such and there are only two people that can claim a legitimate "lineage" directly to the Kellar-Thurston legacy via succession; that is myself and Lance Burton; my connection coming via Harry Thurston, Will Rock and my mentor Kirk Kirkham where Lance's ties come via Dante and Lee Grabel.

Nonetheless, I have had frequent encounters with those claiming ties to something that simply isn't true... my would be detractors yet being able to explain away my knowledge of magic... more specifically, my role in the development of new magic and sense of general resources when it comes to what is what. Rather, they pick at a loose thread that isn't nearly as loose as they would like others to believe and most certainly won't unravel anything if tugged upon for any length of time in that I do not claim to be anything more than a working schlep that's pushed lots of boxes for lots of years and managed to get in a few hundred shows here and there at the same time. :wink:

So I say again James, pardon my confusion and venom... I'd just dealt with one of these fools on two other forums, for spreading his gossip and I feared you were associated with the same mad dog.

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Postby LoveKey1988 » Mon Jun 01, 2009 4:08 pm

Good post Craig. I learned a lot. Thanks! :)

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Postby Randy » Thu Jul 30, 2009 5:26 am

Yeah I see this happening a lot too with all these new effects coming out as well. I was just yelled at by a guy who thought I would think he would be "famous" because he was working on a book. Which I found kind of funny because pretty now days, literally anybody can get a book published and sold on the market.

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Refreshing thread

Postby Daniel Normandeau » Wed Oct 21, 2009 4:12 am

What a refreshing thread. I was happy to see so many people agreeing with me!

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Postby greatwillies » Fri Jun 04, 2010 3:34 am

Mind blowing theory craig. I love it. The points what you have mentioned here is the truth and I love to follow it. Actually I am also thing in this way and specially like you I have never do anything for the money and never will do.

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