Recommended Resources for Beginners in Card Magic

It's no surprise that many aspiring magicians are drawn to card magic before they get into mentalism, money magic, Zoom magic or other branches when they’re first starting out with magic tricks. All you need to learn card tricks is some playing cards and, contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to master a ton of difficult sleight of hand to begin performing. No need to attend magic conventions. In fact, many incredible card tricks are completely self-working. With just a bit of practice, you can learn card magic and start amazing friends and family in no time! (No need for flash paper or other magic props just yet).

Magician Andi Gladwin performs a card trick with bicycle playing cards for a young female magician Photo Credit: Ari Isenberg

Where Can I Learn Card Magic?

So, you’ve grabbed a deck of cards (we recommend Bicycle cards), and maybe even finished watching a season of The Carbonaro Effect or Magic for Humans, and now you are eager to learn how to perform magic tricks like Michael Carbonaro, Justin Willman or David Blaine.

From books to DVDs and downloads, there is a lifetime’s worth of card magic at your disposal. We know this can be a little overwhelming. That’s why we’re here to help you begin your card magic journey and learn card magic basics!

Learn Easy Card Tricks for Free

Before you go any further, we’re excited to let you know that we have some amazing, FREE resources for learning card magic.

Additionally, we’ve teamed up with legendary card magician R. Paul Wilson to create an unbelievable 80-minute video jam-packed with the key fundamentals and card tricks you need to get started in card magic.

Get Your FREE Card Magic Tutorial

Below, we’ve compiled some of our top resources for beginners in card magic. While this list is comprehensive, it is definitely not exhaustive. There are countless other fantastic resources for you to use as your magic journey progresses. However, these are a great starting point for any beginner magician.

Stage magicians and mentalists Morgan & West perform a card trick at the Magifest magic convention Photo Credit: Ari Isenberg

Learning the Fundamentals

As with all types of magic tricks, it’s extremely important that you build a strong fundamental basis when learning card magic. Many beginner magic books feature a variety of easy card tricks along with coin tricks, spoon bending, rope tricks, mind reading and other great beginner magic tricks.

The following books are HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for beginner magicians and have been used by many professional magicians to start their own magic journey. They might even be available at your local library (section 793.8).

For more specific learning on card tricks, card sleights and card handling:

  • The Royal Road to Card Magic by Jean Hugard and Frederick Braue is considered by many magicians to be one of the most influential books in card magic and is one of the most commonly recommended books for beginner magicians.

    A complete set of Magician Robert Giobbi's Card College Books
  • A fantastic Royal Road to Card Magic DVD Set taught by Magician R. Paul Wilson is also available and covers the key material from the book.

  • Roberto Giobbi’s iconic card magic series Card College is like a complete “college course” in card magic. Beyond teaching tricks, Roberto offers fascinating history and anecdotes that make for interesting presentations and theatrical tips to go along with each card trick.

  • Roberto Giobbi also teaches an incredible course on the five most essential areas of card magic with his Card Magic Materclass.

Learning Easy Card Tricks

Once you’ve learned your card magic basics, you can start working on some mind-blowing easy card tricks:

Magician Ryan Schlutz performs easy card tricks from his Super Strong Super Simple magic dvd and download

Self-Working Card Magic Miracles

When it comes to easy card tricks, it doesn’t get any easier than self-working card tricks. These tricks require no sleight of hand and can be done by nearly any beginner magician. Cover of magician John Bannon's magic book Destination Zero

  • Self-Working Card Tricks by Karl Fulves is one of the most referenced books for this type of card magic.

  • We also encourage you to check out the fantastic Ultimate Self-Working Card Tricks collection from BigBlindMedia. This special set is filled with a variety of lesser-known, self-working card tricks that are easy for beginners to learn while also being strong enough to fit a professional magician's repertoire.

  • Legendary Card Magician John Bannon has built a reputation over the last 30 years for strong and powerful card magic that is easy to do. Much of his acclaimed card magic is self-working and can be found in Move Zero, Decked Out and Destination Zero.

Easy Packet Card Tricks

Although these card tricks require special gimmicked cards, they are inexpensive and super easy to use:

Cover of close up magician Erik Casey's easy card trick Poker Test 2.0

Best Decks of Cards for Beginner Magicians

Since these special trick decks of cards are often associated with beginner magic, many professional magicians can sometimes be guilty of forgetting how useful they are. Beyond being simple to use, these trick decks of cards allow you to perform jaw-dropping card magic with virtually no sleight of hand. There is a reason they can be found in nearly every beginner magic kit ever made:

Every Magician Needs To Stand Out!

An orange deck of gorgeous Vanishing Inc. Dapper Deck Playing Cards That’s why we also have an amazing selection of gorgeous custom playing cards available. We have a deck of cards to suit any style. Start your playing card collection today and ensure your card magic always stands out from the crowd!

Shop Playing Cards

Magicians and Vanishing Inc. cofounders Joshua Jay and Andi Gladwin

There you have it, a detailed list of the best resources for learning card tricks. As we mentioned, this is only the beginning. We hope that you continue to reference this guide as you continue on your card magic journey.

If you ever have any questions along the way or want to learn more, you can always reach us via our contact page.