Magician's Parlor...

Not quite sure where I’m going with this, but wanted to make a room full of magic props.

No much there yet, but it’s a start.

And let me just say that spreading those cards out was a major pain in the butt…

http://www.penitentman.com/images/blender/magparlor-wip1-thumb.jpg

Well, the carpet and the wallpaper are fitting! :wink:

As for props, what kind of props? judging by the hat and cards, they’re going to be small props. No Siegefried and Roy, stage-sized things, so… hmm… maybe 3 silver cups and a ball? a pile of “magical” rope? some metal hoops, inexplicably tangled together? a rabbit peeking out from under the hat? :wink:

Yeah, I was thinking mostly smaller stuff, including most of the things you mentioned. Figured an old-school bird cage with a dove or two, that sort of thing. A few “magical boxes” of various sizes. The largest of which might be of the “saw someone in half” variety, etc.

heh heh… glad you like the carpet and walls… not quite sure if those are the final walls or not, but that carpet was too “cheesy-yet-perfect” to pass up.

I suggest that you get the camera in closer … much closer. What you can put on the table and perhaps propped up against the wall immediately behind it, that should be your picture. All of it.

If you wish to do more camera setups in the same room, which might be filled with magical items of all sorts, then by all means do that … but make them separate camera setups. When you have a hat and a couple of fanned-out decks of cards, those are small objects which need their own treatment. A single picture that tries to incorporate both “big” and “small” is hard-put to do justice to either.

Now, tell me about this magician. Is he an old man, a has-been? Did he work the Vegas circuit, or the travelling circus? Are his accoutrements bright and sophisticated and shiny, or did he make a little too-much use of glitter and cut-out lettering? Was he really the great man he said he was, or is his life a tragedy of sorts? …

Or… Is this the secret lair of his little white dove, who was actually the true magician for all those hard years on the road? …

Or… maybe this is a Magic Shop. Maybe it is a place where little boys can dream of greatness. Maybe it is a forlorn little place looking for its identity amidst the clamor of an urban shopping-mall. Perhaps it is a place where ancient devils lurk in enchanted tricks waiting to prey upon victims in yet-another century…

You, the Author, get to decide all this. Then think about how you might work that sense of story, of character, into your pictures. The effect might be almost subliminal, but it will help to make your artwork sing. People love to have their imaginations teased; they love to empathize, to have a picture sound a stronger chord. Think about that.

Wow… those are some good questions. I’m glad you brought them up. I didn’t really feel much “attachment” to the scene, and so really didn’t know what I wanted. You’re right though, especially after hand placing all those stinking cards, the least I can do is let them be seen!

I already have some ideas… first of which will be to get rid of that stale table. I think it will be more of a shop atmosphere with those cards and want and such laid out on the counter as if ready for the first person who wants to see a performance… but I will need to do some thinking about who the proprietor is… who is the character that created and runs the shop…

Great stuff… thank you!

The whole story of the shop. The whole story.

Why not write some ideas down and tell them to yourself? Oh, you might not use any of it and of course we won’t be able to read it, but when you’re dressing a set “the magic is in the details.” The clearer your understanding of the so-called “back story,” the more creative you become in the set-dressing. And, the stronger an actor, the set itself becomes!

The choice of visual elements, lighting and composition are strictly your own, and sometimes “less is more” in story telling. I believe that the single thing that makes a compelling picture is that elusive sense of story.

Bon appetit! 8)