Draven Reviews: On Off by Nicholas Lawrence

Title: On Off
Artist: Nicholas Lawrence
Producers: SansMind Magic
Retail Price: $29.95
Learning Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult
Length of DVD:  41 Minutes
Notes: You will need anywhere from one to three identical rings of a specific type.


•    Instructional DVD
•    Gimmick

•    Play All
•    Menu
•    SM Products
•    Credits

The classic remove your thumb gag illusion that we all learn as kids just got an upgrade.  Remove your pinky finger, pull it clean and clear from your hand, and then snap it back on!  This is On Off by Nicholas Lawrence.

This is an interesting illusion that looks simple enough to perform and is a pain in the hands to master.  Literally!  When I saw the demo video for this one online I thought to myself “Now this has potential.”  I love geek magic, and I’d almost classify this into that category.  The nice thing is, so long as you have a finger, you can perform this illusion.  So it’s ALWAYS with you.  There are no fake fingers to palm in or steal away.  It’s real flesh and blood that you’re using.  This brings me to why it’s such a pain to learn.  You’re going to have to teach your hands how to smoothly go into positions that will be awkward at first to do.  You’ll have to stretch and work on this one to get it right.  It’s deceptively simple looking.

The DVD talks about you needing to supply your own finger ring, and quite possibly two of them to do it the preferred way.  Honestly, I think this is over kill.  You can almost do this without a ring, and get away with it in front of spectators, and the one ring version is enough of a fooler to pass even the closest of inspection by someone burning your hands.  The DVD comes with special material to construct your own gimmick that helps sell the illusion via the use of black art but again I think this really is just over kill.

The DVD teaches you several different handlings for this trick so you can figure out what works better for you from there.  This trick is angle sensitive, though with proper practice and audience management there really shouldn’t be an issue.  You should be able to shield everything so you can perform in a half circle and still be okay.  Obviously you don’t want anyone shorter than where you’re working looking up.  You don’t have to worry about anyone behind you as they’ll never see anything anyways.

The gimmick ring construction with the material provided is pretty simple.  I think it’s entirely unnecessary but that’s just me.  The construction will take you all of five minutes to complete.  If you do decide to use any of the ring versions of this trick then you’ll have to supply your own rings.  This will mean you may have to go ring shopping because you’ll want all the rings to look exactly the same.  So be prepared for that extra hidden cost.

This is a fun little trick to do for people when doing street magic.  It’s so quick that the spectator doesn’t see it coming until its hit them firm between the eyes.  The reactions you will get are priceless! No matter which version you choose to use, ringless, single ring, double ring, or gaff ring, you’ll have a powerful little reputation maker on your hands.  You just have to devote the time to teaching your fingers to go into new positions.  If you are looking for something quick that packs a visual punch, and is a little off the beaten pass then On Off is for you.

When I give my product scores below I am measuring them on a scale of 1 to 10. 1 Being absolute the worst score possible, and 10 being the absolute best, making a score of five average. The four points that I grade upon is Product Quality, Teaching Quality, Sound & Video Quality and Overall Quality.

Product Quality: 6
The price is okay, and so is the trick.  You’ll need to buy a ring or three especially for this trick.

Teaching Quality: 7
The moves are going to take some time to master.  The teaching is pretty good though.

Video & Sound Quality: 9
Good audio and video.  No issues.

Overall Quality: 7
This is a fun trick.  It’s very visual, and not something you’ll see everyone doing.  I think it’s a cleaver play on a classic, tired, and over used trick.  I think it’s worth checking out.

Have a product you want reviewed?  Want to see if it will stand up to the Draven Seal of Approval?  Contact me directly at draven@williamdraven.com to find out how your product could be on the next Draven Reviews!

About William Draven

William Draven is a professional magician and sideshow performer living in Los Angeles, California. Follow him on Twitter at WilliamDraven or on facebook at www.facebook.com/thewilliamdraven
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