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Ghost Frame
By Jolyon Jenkins

The card frame prop – in which a card appears within a sealed and previously blank picture frame – has a long history. Bosco and Hofzinser both developed the effect, which is purely mechanical in operation, in the late nineteenth century. This prop takes the effect a stage further and allows the card, or any other picture, to appear slowly and visibly, under the noses of the audience. The appearance of the picture is slightly like a photograph developing in a darkroom, although some bits of the picture tend to appear before others, leading to a “can you see what it is yet?” experience. The speed at which it happens depends on several variables – at its fastest it can be around 15 seconds, or it can take several minutes. You can also make the image fade again.

The effect can be used for sťance magic, where it can be presented as a kind of “spirit photography”, or telepathic x-ray. The picture that is revealed could be an old daguerreotype-style image of the dead person; with some pre-show work, you could use an image of a dead relative of an audience member. The image is inherently slightly cloudy, which lends itself to old black and white pictures. Alternatively you can use it in mentalism, where you force an image on the audience – for example, you force the Eiffel Tower, and then slowly reveal a picture of that building. Or you can just use it as a card frame. Force your card, have the spectator concentrate on the image of the card and then a clouded image of the card appears inside the frame.

Watch the video below to get an idea of how well it works.

Ghost Frame is also not a simple project, but it does not require any soldering (except as an option). It requires some construction work, as well as some knowledge of electrical wiring, switches and other electric parts, but uses no true electronics parts in its construction.

Note: This is an e-Book of instructions for building the effect, and not the actual prop itself. You make the device following photos and instructions and get the parts from sources suggested by the author. The purchase of any of these e-Books entitles you to construct one item for your own personal use. If you are interested in acquiring a manufacturing licence please contact the author via the Magic Nook. Copying and resale of any e-Book is prohibited by International Copyright law.

Ghost Frame
by Jolyon Jenkins

MT01-08

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