【Makerpro专题】把个人兴趣变成生存的武器,而且还是夫妻档,这么美的事儿真的有可能吗 — Maker Magician, Mario

把个人兴趣变成生存的武器,而且还是夫妻档,这么美的事儿真的有可能吗 — Maker Magician, Mario

所属区域: 纽约

团队规模: 2人,家庭团队

Makerpro 类型: Makersmith

  • 主创/团队故事

从业余表演迈向全职工作的契机
大约十年前,Mario 是一名全职的特殊教育学校助理。他发现周末晚上做魔术表演的收入已经远远超过他本职工作的收入,而且那个时候给他介绍表演的中介还要收取75%的手续费。Mario 的太太 Katie 当时在做一份行政的工作,她并不喜欢。 常常要工作到凌晨三点的她建议他们不如自己来创业。尽管并不顺利,但当他们 付出了第一个月,第二个月,第三个月的房租的额时候,他们感到了发自内心的 欣喜。

表演特色
表演几乎完全使用可回收的废旧物品以及自己DIY 的物件。他的表演场地从纽约林 肯表演艺术中心到邻居的客厅,还给小孩子写了一本扑克牌魔术的书,他还做一 些课后的魔术表演项目。他表演的目的是带给孩子快乐,并激发孩子的创造力–利用废旧物品就可以了。

一部纪录片
Mario 和一位电影制作人一起众筹了关于 Mario 早年独自搭车旅行做魔术师的故 事。并在 kickstarter 上完成了35000美元的目标。

关于 Mario 的视频和表演: https://youtu.be/d04gzD3kdVY 

关于 Mairo 一家的视频: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-OpKmfgbXs&list=PLuVNSmYhDF2z0k_r-HjzzRovFdKJnixB4 

从纽约城众多魔术师中脱颖而出
除了是夫妻档,Mario 还要感谢他早年学到的技能,魔术的,arduino 这一类开源 硬件的,以及20多岁时独自背包在美国旅行的经历。现在他把他所有的发明创造 放在一个手提箱和一个背包里,从一个机器猴子的穿插表演到翻领上的花都是他 自己制作的,所有的一切都体现着他的商业哲学。

  • Q&A

Q:你是如何开始 make的

A:一切源于我对机械装置和古老魔术原理的热爱。一开始是做一些木雕和缝纫, 以及一些非电子的。直到接触到 MAKE 杂志,接触到 arduino,我学习的科目完 全改变了。我花了两年时间去提炼如何驱动电机。做一个与魔术无关的画图机器 让自己把机器人技术完全融入到魔术当中来。

 

Q:你最想把自己归类为哪一种创客

A: 当然是魔术创客。我的表演完全是符合创客运动精神的,我使用披萨盒,胶 带,3D 打印部件,用 arduino 驱动机器人。我做了机器猴子Marcel 来协助表演, 做了机器人灯先生等,我很幸运能够把爱好融入自己的职业生涯。我一生中最大 的愿望是能够让小孩子知道,当你买东西,别人会把他拿走,当你学着做东西 时,没人能把他拿走。

 

Q:对 maker 有什么建议吗

A:不要停止学习。不要怕沉入一些项目,即便他们看起来多么不可能实现。如果 设定一个目标,坚持每天花20分钟在上面,你会惊奇你能学到的东西。回想之前 学习在鼻子上放勺子,这个真是足够难了。我们天花20分钟,坚持了3个星期。一 开始用扫帚把,然后逐渐减小,知道能把勺子放上去。坚持做吧,不积跬步无以 至千里。

 

延伸阅读:

(Below are reprinted from HUFFINTON POST and Make Magazine)

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/14/mario-the-magician_n_3758008.html

HUFFINGTON POST:Mario The Magician’s Best Trick: Turning His Passion Into Profit

 

For small business owners, turning your passion into profit always comes with risk. But when that passion is something as unique as magic, you better hope you have one heck of a trick up your sleeve.

Mario and Katie Marchese, the husband and wife team behind Nyack, N.Y.-based Mario the Magician, appear to have beaten the odds after giving up everything to go into the magic business, basing an act almost entirely on recycled and homemade props and equipment. To make it work, Mario’s played venues ranging from Lincoln Center to neighbor’s living rooms, authored a book for kids about card tricks, as well as regularly taught after-school magic programs.

“Our purpose is to bring joy to kids and inspire kids to create — without going to a store to buy things,” Mario told HuffPost.

But reaching that level of success wasn’t easy. Seven years ago Mario and Katie decided to go into magic full-time when they discovered that Mario was making more money moonlighting as a magician on the weekends than he was as a full-time special education aide even though the agency who booked his gigs took around a 75 percent cut.

“It kinda hurt, you know?” said Katie, who was working an administrative job that she “hated” at the time. She suggested they start their own business and it wasn’t long before she found herself up till 3:00 a.m. desperately trying to book enough gigs to make ends meet.

“Somehow it just worked and we made our rent that month, and we made the rent the next month and we made our rent the month after that month, and it wasn’t always easy but somewhere we figured it out. And it was really exhilarating.”

Now the duo, along with filmmaker Kal, are working on their next trick: a full-length documentary. Based on a short film they originally produced to promote the business, the independent documentary will tell the tale of Mario the Magician’s years spent hitchhiking the U.S. before returning to New York to start a family and a business as “a wandering traveler turned full-time maker magician.” The project just met its $35,000 goal on Kickstarter.

While there’s plenty of competition in the New York City area where their business is based, Mario and Katie were able to set themselves apart, not only because they were a husband and wife team, but also thanks to skills Mario learned during his late teens and early twenties traveling the U.S. Living out of just a backpack for years, he now confines his act to the creations he can fit in a suitcase and a side bag. From a robotic monkey sideshow to spinning lapel flowers, Mario builds it all himself, a skill honed on the road that not only has gained him recognition in America’s maker movement but also factors into the business’s philosophy itself.

The film, Mario says, is a way for them to keep building on what they’ve already created.

“That’s why this movie is so important to us. We’ve survived and we’ve made it into a business that can provide for our family. But now what’s next?” Mario said. “We needed inspiration. And the outpouring on Kickstarter was kind of like this big omen for us, maybe this is what’s next.”

 

video about Mario + making: https://youtu.be/d04gzD3kdVY 

video series about Mario, Katie, and the kids: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-OpKmfgbXs&list=PLuVNSmYhDF2z0k_r-HjzzRovFdKJnixB4 

 

One more story about Mario

https://makezine.com/2016/10/26/maker-spotlight-mario-the-magician/

Make Magazine: Maker Spotlight: Mario the Magician

Name: Mario “the Magician” Marchese
Home: Nyack, New York
Makerspace: my dining room, garage, yard, porch, attic… it’s everywhere!
Day Job: Full-time magician. My wife, Katie, and I just celebrated 10 years since quitting our “day jobs” for this magic thing!

mariomarchese_1

How’d you get started making? A love for automata and magic mechanisms of yore sparked my first desires to make, back before I even knew how to solder an LED to a switch. My first iterations of making were wood carving, sewing, and beginning to create (non-electronic) props for my magic show. It wasn’t until I got my hands on an issue of Make: magazine in 2005 or 2006 that I learned about the Arduino, and the course of my learning was forever changed. I spent two years refining my understanding of how to program motors to move. First experiments in creating non-magic-related drawing machines eventually led to fully adapting robotics into my magic show.

mariomarchese_davidschloss_1

What type of maker would you classify yourself as? A “Maker Magician!” My show these days resides fully in the spirit of the Maker Movement, with props made from pizza boxes, tape, 3D printed elements, and Arduino driven robotics. My first big feat was the creation of Marcel the Mechanical Monkey, the first ever autonomous, magic assisting, robotic monkey. I travel the country with my family showcasing Marcel and the rest of my menagerie of robotic props in my live show. There’s Mr. Lamp the lovable robotic lamp, a booty-shaking Card Machine, Mr. Clock the misbehaving time-teller, an interactive suitcase machine, and so much more. I feel so fortunate to have been able to combine my love for making with my career. I live it, and it defines my life. I feel that one of my greatest purposes in life is to show kids that when you buy something, people can take it away from you. But when you learn to MAKE something, no one can ever take that away.

What’s your favorite thing you’ve made? A few years ago I challenged myself to restore and build a 1967 Bradley GT kit car. It’s built on the chassis of a 1967 VW beetle. The body is made of fiberglass, and the doors open like a DeLorean! It’s a powerful symbol for me. I knew nothing about cars when I started this project, and by the time it was completed, I felt a whole new confidence in myself.

mariomarchese_littlebluebus

Learning about that VW engine led me to another big project, the restoration of our 1971 VW bus, the #littlebluebus. This summer, we packed up the show and our two little kids and took the bus on tour from New York to North Carolina to Tennessee. The #littlebluebus has become our family magic bus, an extension of our dedication to making… to magic… to adventure. And we are documenting these adventures in a series of short videos on YouTube… about family, travel, magic, the Maker Movement, Maker Faires, etc. (#MyMagicFamily on my YouTube channel.) The video below is from that series, and concentrates on what Maker Faire means to me:

What’s something you’d like to make next? I’ve challenged myself this year to build three new robotic machines that do magic with me on stage. Aside from that, I want to continue to learn how to manipulate simple objects like my hat and tie in a funnier, more magical way. And I want to learn to moonwalk like Michael Jackson.

Portraits of Mario the Magician

Any advice for people reading this? Never stop learning! Don’t be afraid to dive into projects, no matter how impossible they may seem. It’s amazing how much you can learn if you spend just 20 minutes a day on a specific goal. I think back to when I learned how to balance a spoon on my nose. It’s ridiculously hard to do! But I spent 20 minutes a day for three weeks, starting with a broom stick and slowly substituting shorter and shorter objects until I finally got down to that spoon. Keep on doing. A mountain is climbed one step at a time.

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