Alex Lourido – Inside Magic Celebrity Interview

The Amazing Osmosis

Inside Magic: Hi Alex and welcome to Inside Magic’s Celebrity Interview. How did you get interested in magic?

Hi, thanks. Going back to my earliest childhood I was always fascinated with magic. In second grade I signed out my first magic book from the school library and read it from cover-to-cover.

Inside Magic: What kind of tricks did you learn from that first book?

I learned how to build my first “pull” utilizing rubber bands, and how to perform the “paddle move.” My fascination grew with each page and I eventually read all of the material that was available to me via my school library, which, by the way, was a whopping three books! (You have to remember, this was before anyone new what the word, “Internet,” meant!)

Inside Magic: What did you do after you finished the three books on magic?

Right, my sources quickly dried up and it wasn’t until much later, when I joined the Armed Forces, that I picked up where I left off, so many years ago. I entered the 82ND Airborne Division in ’92, and by ’93 I became an Airborne Ranger in the US Special Operations Forces.

It was there that I met a very special person who rekindled my love for magic. Specialist Pine was my roommate at the Ranger Battalion and he was also an incredible magician. His father was a professional, practicing magician in Vegas and Pine learned a lot from him (wouldn’t it be nice to have a father who was a Vegas Magician)!

Aaaahhhhh . . . Magic Coins . . ..

Pine taught me some incredible card magic. With his guidance I was quickly able to perform an effective shuttle pass, learn the arts of sleeving and lapping, prevent coins from “talking”, and he even introduced me to the secret world of coin magic with the use of “specialty” coins. Ahhhhhhhh….gimmicked coins……..that’s where I begin to salivate!

Inside Magic: What did you do after leaving the service?

I went to college in Philadelphia, I continued my search for quality magic. The military paid for my tuition, but to make extra money I began performing magic at theme parks. Upon graduation I began making TV commercials. I jumped around the City and worked as an AVID Editor. Within a few years I became the senior editor for a large production company that only makes celebrity endorsement commercials.

It was here that I cut commercials for Chuck Norris, Scott Hamilton, Susan Sommers, Lennox Lewis and some others. However, during this entire time, I felt that I was not doing what I was placed on this earth to do–ENTERTAIN! That is, unless you find cheesy infomercials that use…

The Amazing Osmosis

Inside Magic: Hi Alex and welcome to Inside Magic’s Celebrity Interview. How did you get interested in magic?

Hi, thanks. Going back to my earliest childhood I was always fascinated with magic. In second grade I signed out my first magic book from the school library and read it from cover-to-cover.

Inside Magic: What kind of tricks did you learn from that first book?

I learned how to build my first “pull” utilizing rubber bands, and how to perform the “paddle move.” My fascination grew with each page and I eventually read all of the material that was available to me via my school library, which, by the way, was a whopping three books! (You have to remember, this was before anyone new what the word, “Internet,” meant!)

Inside Magic: What did you do after you finished the three books on magic?

Right, my sources quickly dried up and it wasn’t until much later, when I joined the Armed Forces, that I picked up where I left off, so many years ago. I entered the 82ND Airborne Division in ’92, and by ’93 I became an Airborne Ranger in the US Special Operations Forces.

It was there that I met a very special person who rekindled my love for magic. Specialist Pine was my roommate at the Ranger Battalion and he was also an incredible magician. His father was a professional, practicing magician in Vegas and Pine learned a lot from him (wouldn’t it be nice to have a father who was a Vegas Magician)!

Aaaahhhhh . . . Magic Coins . . ..

Pine taught me some incredible card magic. With his guidance I was quickly able to perform an effective shuttle pass, learn the arts of sleeving and lapping, prevent coins from “talking”, and he even introduced me to the secret world of coin magic with the use of “specialty” coins. Ahhhhhhhh….gimmicked coins……..that’s where I begin to salivate!

Inside Magic: What did you do after leaving the service?

I went to college in Philadelphia, I continued my search for quality magic. The military paid for my tuition, but to make extra money I began performing magic at theme parks. Upon graduation I began making TV commercials. I jumped around the City and worked as an AVID Editor. Within a few years I became the senior editor for a large production company that only makes celebrity endorsement commercials.

It was here that I cut commercials for Chuck Norris, Scott Hamilton, Susan Sommers, Lennox Lewis and some others. However, during this entire time, I felt that I was not doing what I was placed on this earth to do–ENTERTAIN! That is, unless you find cheesy infomercials that use washed-up celebrities to sell their products, entertaining; In that case, then, yeah, I was a hell of an entertainer! Eventually, I resigned from the business and started performing again!

Inside Magic: What did you do?

I started developing and inventing my own magic, and with all of the skills that I learned as an Editor, I began creating instructional videos. My Osmosis Illusion has been my most successful product to date, and a high quality instructional video, which teaches all of the incredible things that can be performed with this prop, is now available.

We are also preparing to release a new gimmicked coin on the market called, ButterCoin. This wonderful coin comes with a 35 minute instructional video that teaches six powerful routines that can be performed with this new coin!

We believe that ButterCoin is going to be a huge success.

Inside Magic: What are your goals for the company?

We also have other products on the horizon. My goal as the creator of Psychotic Neurotics Magic Company is to not only create high quality magic, but to create magic that appears miracles to the spectator! This is our underlying goal, and the way I develop new tricks is I simply say to myself, “Wouldn’t it be cool if someone could do this?” Then I try to develop a method or devise to make it happen. And most of the time you’re not reinventing the wheel, but simply making a considerable improvement on an existing effect or concept.

Inside Magic: Is it hard to make new tricks? How do you balance price versus effect?

You’re right. The most difficult step to developing new magic is not coming up with the ideas, but getting the illusion manufactured at a decent price! If your costs are too highly then no one is willing to buy your products, no matter how good they are!

So it’s a constant battle with the manufactures and sometimes we avoid the entire issue by manufacturing our own products, in-house. This way we can closely monitor quality and keep our costs down, which translates to greater savings for magicians.

Inside Magic: Here’s a loaded question; What is your opinion on the theft of magic effects?

Magic theft is a big issue and a huge concern of mine. I am always frightened that my products and videos are going to be knocked off; however, we can’t let that stop us from moving forward. I believe in trying to protect yourself as much as possible via patents and trademarks, but we all know that sometimes this is not possible. In the case of theft, I believe in handling each case individually.

Inside Magic: Do you manufacture your tricks or do you send the specifications to factory? Who distributes your effects?

As I stated, we do make many of our own tricks and videos, however, some are manufactured elsewhere.

Currently, our major distributor is Fun Inc. We also sell our products directly to magic shops and Internet shops at a considerable savings.

Inside Magic: So, let’s get back to the design process. What factors do you consider when making a trick?

When designing a trick I always have two major goals in mind: Effect and Cost. First and foremost, I’m concerned with creating something that is visually stunning, and if I can succeed at that, I then think, “How much is this going to cost to make!”

Inside Magic: Thank you, Alex. We love the Osmosis effect and look forward to the Buttercoin. Good luck and thanks for your great contributions to our great art. We’re glad you took the risk to start your company. It paid off for all of us.

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