inventions
Photo by David Friedman
See Marks Inventions and creations.

 

A collection of Inventions.  Explore the inventions below to learn more.

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I tried to bring back my 3 Electronic Magic tricks, which I created in the 1990's. Nowadays the market is too crowded to sell 3 separate tricks, so I combined them, as well as 7 other tricks in the Skull. I collaborated with Bob Jeffway who did the electronics.

Andre Armenante showed me his idea for using a cellphone to create a "Peppers Ghost" illusion in a cardboard theater. I suggested using his theater to perform a Magic show and make it for my Mr. Creepy magic line. While working on it we decided a Sci-Fi theme would sell better than it being a magic set.

Jigazo is a puzzle with 300 pieces that can be put together to make anybody's face. It was a big hit in Japan. Jigazo in Japanese means "self portrait". I collaborated with Ken Knowlton. We went on to create several other versions  which you can see if you click through to the gallery.

Since 1976 I have sent out Christmas cards that I create. I always try to make them some kind of trick or illusion. It is the ultimate challenge to create a magic trick that can fool a person with just cardboard and without the Magician being there to perform it; completely self-performing! This book, published in 1999, was based on my Christmas cards.

A Dutch company "Jumbo" approached me to create a new magic set. Rather than make a box of separate tricks, my goal was to create an actual show; a complete act with a beginning, middle and end that very young kids can perform. My breakthrough was to create a stage with pages/scenes that changed for each trick. This allowed a smooth and organized transition for each trick. 

Magic in toy stores have always been boxes of tricks, quantity over quality. 100 or more "tricks" - a few good and the rest bad tricks. I convinced Milton Bradley on the idea to focus on one great trick rather than quantity. Series 1 were all Tenyo tricks, who I recruited to be part of the project. I also worked with other Magic Inventors to help me invent tricks for future series.

Magic Works was a huge hit, and the hardest part of a success is follow up ideas. At toy fair, you can't just offer the buyers a few new tricks; you have to show them something very new and exciting. That's why I created Electronic Magic. The first ever-Magic tricks that talk!

A magic show with video and tricks that interacted with the TV. It would have been much easier to have the character on the video be the star and have the kid just follow along, but the Kid had to be the star, and it had to run 5 minutes without pausing.

Was produced by Pressman in the mid 1990's, it is a good example of styling. My goal was not to invent completely new tricks, but to style and redesign classic magic tricks using a spooky theme. It still sells today in Europe.

I always loved this classic German sword illusion toy patented in 1933. Where a sword passes thru a toothpick. It is one of the best illusions ever. I wanted to make it larger and have the sword pass thru your finger. A completely new mechanism had to be invented to achieve this. I also changed the shape and enhanced the graphics to make my version much more deceptive then the German version.

As a student at SVA I created a business card using a mirror to reflect my name (I still use it today). It got such a great response that it encouraged me to create other ideas using mirrors. While discussing mirror ideas with my friend and fellow inventor Joe Dibley, we collaborated on a game we called "Illusion". It became "Rubik's Illusion".

I like the old trick where you put a finger from hand over a finger of the other hand and you apparently remove your finger. I do a version of this trick using a playing card over your finger instead of the other finger. When I was asked if I had any ideas for finger puppets, the idea for Tricky Fingers came to me all at once – use a character head instead of the card!

    A toy where the most fun was to draw directly on it's mirrored surface which created an amazing kaleidoscope effect. I created this in the 1980's and is one of my best mirror inventions.
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