The Gypsy Deck and the Medieval Tarot

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The Gypsy Deck and the Medieval Tarot

Postby Card-Shark » Jul 9th, '07, 20:28



OK, this can get a little bit difficult. Because this is not a review in the common sense. So please, admin, transfer this thread to the appropriate place, but I could not find a better one.

I would love to share my newest creation with you. I was asked by a belgium magician - Tonny van Rhee - to produce the cards for a completely new handling of the Gypsy Curse of Peter Kane. He wanted something that REALLY looked 200 years old. And in the 18th or 19th century the playing cards completely looked different than they do now.

I created the gaffed cards and here you can see the demo performance of Tonny.

When I showed these cards to other magicians including Juan Tamariz, Roberto Giobbi and Richard Sanders the reactions where always overwhelming so I decided to create a whole deck with these old looking playing cards. And this should be the perfect deck for magicians:

- they are very subtle marked on the back so that you can easily find out which card is selected
- the cards look really old and worn out but they are actually printed on first class linen structure playing card stock so every handling is possible, even a double-lift, palming and other nice sleights of hands
- they have an old Tarot-size so that they are not familiar to usual Poker-sized cards. But they are still small enough so that you can palm a card
- as old cards they should have no corner roundings, but I will give them small ones to improve the handling
- every card looks different, the printings on the cards have scratches all over
- I used old looking images (indeed they are based on a poker deck from early 1800) but the images are still familiar to all layman
- all picture cards have the index printed on the upper left corner so that they will be seen easily when spreading the deck.
- I would include Joker cards even if they were invented much later than 1800.

So here is an image of the prototype.

To improve the value of the deck I want to create additional gaffed cards. Here are some ideas I had and want to include when producing the deck (the Pip Matrix will not been realized, but instead there will be a Wild Card effect from Joerg Alexander from the Flicking Fingers).

And after that I got several demands from bizarre magicians to realize also an old looking Tarot deck. So yes, I will also produce the Medieval Tarot, by clicking the link you can get an overview of the cards.

This is also completely marked, additional force card sets will be available. And after all, I will offer a set of trick cards of the Medieval Tarot.

So this is not a review, just an offer to you to ask me questions about the cards and the idea behind them. I will introduce these cards live at the International Magic Convention in London in November.

Let me hear what you are thinking! Every comment is welcome.
Thank you very much.

Christian

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Postby dat8962 » Jul 9th, '07, 20:55

Hi Cardshark.

Firstly, the video of the Gypsy Curse was great in my opinion and the handling was so slick. I totally missed the coin production mid way through.

The cards look nice with the ageing and the tarot size also suited them in my opinion. However, I note that the face and back designs are identical to the Highlander 1864 poker deck (U.S. Games Systems Inc.) that are sold by Hank Lee's Magic Factory.

With such similarity on the back design and the majority of the Royal card faces I'm not quite sure if your copyright will hold

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Postby Card-Shark » Jul 9th, '07, 21:18

Thank you for finding the Highlander 1864 poker deck. Yes, the cards are similar to these cards. The Highlanders are a reprint of a poker deck from 1864. The copyright ends after 70 years of the death of the creator, a lawyer checked that for me. BTW, you are the first to find the Highlanders deck in conjunction with my Gypsy Deck. Congratulations ;)

Here is an extract of vintage playing card decks sold at an antique shop in Munich, the cards are from the same time period of the 1800 to 1880. As faces of poker decks now look nearly all the same the faces of the poker decks looked all the same during the time period I am referring to.

As I redesigned the faces (the court cards are redesigned so that they are mirrored and the low cards are completely constructed and not scanned) and used only a small part of the back design to add a marking this also will not be a problem.

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Postby dat8962 » Jul 9th, '07, 21:32

BTW, you are the first to find the Highlanders deck in conjunction with my Gypsy Deck


I bought six decks of these earlier this year to perform with at a trade show for a corporate client who sells investment portfolios, specialising in old and rare antiquities. I wanted to have something that fitted in with this theme and the cards seemed to fit the bill while having a sort of novelty value as well.

They certainly got some interest from the audience and I gave a few decks away once they had become worn in which pleaed the recipients.

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Postby Card-Shark » Jul 9th, '07, 21:40

they also impressed me but I did not like the paper quality and the new look of these old cards. But they inspired me alot when creating the cards for the gypsy curse.

But if I would have to choose between the Highlanders 1864 and the Vintage 1800 when asked for old looking playing cards I would always select the Highlanders. And now I have a third possibility to choose from ;)

And that the cards are completely marked and will come in near Bicycle quality with linen structure high quality playing card stock used they hopefully will help in creating miracles using stories of an ancient playing card deck.

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Postby Michael Jay » Jul 9th, '07, 21:46

Uh, Card-Shark, I'm not a lawyer, but I strongly suggest that you consider what I'm about to tell you:

Copyright isn't the issue. Trade Mark is the issue. And, trade mark is an altogether different ball game than copyright. As far as I know, trade marks do not run out of time, like copyrights.

I strongly suggest that you look into the trade mark of these vintage markings...You might just find yourself in a lawsuit if you don't pay attention to this.

Mike.

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Postby Card-Shark » Jul 9th, '07, 22:06

Yes I know the difference of TradeMark and Copyright. But I am also no lawyer that is why I demanded a lawyer (who is also a magician) to check if I would infringe any protection issues. (sorry if I use the wrong terms here, I hope you understand me though).

For instance if you produce a reprint of a famous painting that is in public
domain you can never attach a trade mark to it. Only to your own product where you use this image. But here we are entering a great and interesting field of copyright issues. Have you ever noticed how many magic tricks exist where the back of a Bicycle card is used and where the prints are not produced on genuine Bicycle card stock? All these effects infringe the respective copyright of USPC, but nobody cares.

BTW, the faces of Bicycle playing cards are completey public domain, only the Ace of Spades and the Joker are copyrighted (you can even read it on every flap of their tuck boxes)

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Postby Michael Jay » Jul 9th, '07, 22:24

Hey, just trying to help. You obviously know more about this than I do. My apologies for giving a damn.

Mike.

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Postby dat8962 » Jul 9th, '07, 22:33

But if I would have to choose between the Highlanders 1864 and the Vintage 1800 when asked for old looking playing cards I would always select the Highlanders.


Exactly the reason I purchased the Highlanders. I already had some Vintage 1800's and they just didn;t have the look that I was after.

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Postby Card-Shark » Jul 9th, '07, 22:50

no no, sorry if I sound as if I have no interest in your opinion and about copyright issues. I try to describe it as good as I can with my english knowledge (as I am from Germany it is a foreign language for me) and I am sure that I could irritate with my words here.

I had the same fear as you regarding problems that could occur regarding the images so I already asked a lawyer to check this issue. And as you see when opening the above PDF file the court cards all looked the same, back in 18th century. This is very interesting how playing cards evolved during the centuries, I really read a lot about the history of playing cards so that I could realize an authentic looking deck that still fit the special needs of us magicians.

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