Archive for June, 2014

Ollie Mealing: Need inspiration for your magic? You have to look for it

Saturday, June 21st, 2014


Ollie Mealing, creator of Control and Recoil, has worked his share of corporate events, parties and other performances, and is a consultant for Derren Brown. He’s also created a series of incredible performance videos that have amazed thousands of viewers. These are his thoughts about finding creative inspiration when in need of it.

Ollie Mealing: Need inspiration for your magic? You have to look for itBecoming a magician is primarily a solo venture. The extent of what you’re able to grasp is determined by how far you reach.

For that reason, when you’re not hitting your goal, it may not necessarily be due to lack of effort (although persistence is essential), it could simply be because of investing too much effort into the wrong actions. So with that in mind, the question we need to ask ourselves is what other actions are at our disposal.

The answer is an unlimited amount. Actions are the result of actively responding to inspiration, inspiration is the result of processing various stimuli and, in turn, being exposed to various stimuli is the result of you seeking it.

In order to expand your magic you need to expand your mind.

Imagine a pool of water: To remain fresh, it needs a constant steady flow of water entering it. The same imagery is applicable to your mind — a constant steady flow of inspiration is constructive towards discovering new possible actions.

You can only get as far as the tools you give yourself, without taking new actions and ADDING to what you have, you’ll struggle to progress. Consider a vehicle: Without topping off the fuel it can’t sustain infinite movement. Progression is always the result of addition, even if scrapping an action is necessary, the reason to do so is from the addition of a thought.

It’s a common sensation to feel that our ability to progress has hit a wall. I think this is related to the eventual trapping of ourselves into patterns or routines. These are comfortable, they give us an important sense of control (plug), but they limit the stimuli we’re exposed to, which creatively risks stunting our development/awareness of new actions.

I remember a Tony Robbins quote: “If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.”

So when all else seems redundant, the key to progression (in my mind) is variety, intent and application. Actively seek fresh stimuli, extract ideas from them and act upon as you deem necessary.

The rules you abide by dictate the game you play.




Ollie Mealing: Without the challenge, learning magic would be pointless

Thursday, June 12th, 2014


Ollie Mealing, creator of Control and Recoil, has worked his share of corporate events, parties and other performances, and is a consultant for Derren Brown. He’s succeeded and achieved new heights in a field of performance that isn’t exactly easy to master, but the challenge has been worth it. The following are his thoughts about magic’s difficulty and rewards.

Ollie Mealing: Without the challenge, learning magic would be pointlessBecoming a magician is without doubt the greatest challenge I’ve ever taken on board. The scale of the challenge is overwhelming, and I’d be lying if I said I’d never considered throwing in the towel.

But I wouldn’t have it any other way.

The trick to a challenge is persistence, the trick to persistence is loving the challenge and the trick to loving the challenge is learning to appreciate everything that’s thrown at you. This mindset allows you to reap happiness and insight from the entire journey, both essential ingredients for further progression.

Consider how unfulfilling a pursuit magic would be without challenge:

  • ~ If anyone could effortlessly become a magician, there would be little sense of accomplishment.
  • ~ If secrets were easily accessible, the wonder instilled would be vulnerable and minimised.
  • ~ If you didn’t encounter problems, you’d miss out on the joy of discovering exciting and valuable solutions.
  • ~ If you didn’t need to stand out, you wouldn’t need to strive for originality, you’d risk missing out on exercising your creativity and tapping into your true potential.
  • ~ If you didn’t require advice and support, the opportunity to make new and impacting friendships would shrink.

Without challenge the range of material, role models, formats and theories would never be as diverse, rich and respected as they are today, and the scope for appreciation and enjoyment wouldn’t be as extensive.

Without challenge, you, me, this post — we would have never come into existence.

As long as we keep challenging ourselves, the art will remain vibrant and alive, therefore ever-growing and advantageous towards continual enjoyment for us and our audiences.

As long as there is challenge, the art and it’s undertaking will remain enriching. If you’re not feeling challenged, you’re missing out.

Set the bar high and enjoy the ride.