2019 was a year of travelling new ground for us at Rick Smith Jr., Inc; of course, we still did plenty of the same carrot and celery-cutting that we always do, but my team and I were lucky to take advantage of a number of cool new opportunities as our brand has grown (thanks largely to YouTube and social media).
First of all, I have added a number of unique shots to my card-throwing arsenal which I am excited to show off in future videos and shows – while I continued to perfect the throws that have served as the base for my stunts over my 20+ year career, I also began to vary things up by integrating the throws I have created for my online collaborations with YouTubers. For instance, after seeing how much my fanbase enjoyed my Dude Perfect collab, I began performing the “card-throwing outline” trick where I have a volunteer stand against a wall and I draw their silhouette by throwing cards around them (volunteer for this trick the next time you’re at my show if you’re feeling brave!). I have also been working to perfect my “card portrait” trick, where I use throw cards to draw someone’s face on a blank canvas. If you’re interested in seeing some of these new shots, take a look at my YouTube channel here!
Even more exciting are the collaborations I have worked on with some of my favorite internet personalities. Thanks to the startthat I got on YouTube by working with a couple of awesome channels including Dude Perfect and Slo Mo Guys, I have been able to continue building out my business online and have connected with a number of incredible content creators in the process. This year I worked with numerous TV/YouTube celebrities including Bachelor in Paradise star John Paul Jones, world famous musician Lil Nas X, renowned special effects creator Kevin Lustgarten, YouTube stars Mark Rober, David Dobrik and Legendary Shots, and Instagram famous magician (and my own protégé) Elie Haoui. As I work to increase the reach of both my core business and my nonprofit Magic Gives Back, the ability to partner with talented online professionals has created opportunities for which I will be forever grateful. Be sure to check out their channels as well for a diverse range of interesting content!
Finally, while my clips on YouTube gained traction over time, I continued to take advantage of the chances that were offered to me to appear on nationally televised programs. One of the most exciting appearances of my career came when I was a guest on The Late Late Show with James Corden and showed off my card-throwing abilities to the live audience and a multitude of viewers watching at home. I also appeared on Ripley’s Believe It or Not, a program which holds a special place in my heart as it was the very first nationally televised show to feature me when I was first making my start as a professional card-thrower and magician. Finally, I was delighted to get the chance to star on one of the episodes of Masters of Illusion, a show focused on professional magicians and the wide range of abilities they possess. I love the opportunity to inspire young (perhaps future) magicians on a large scale, and I am always willing to work with any TV program that wants to help me do this.
With all of these significant steps forward behind our belt, the team at Rick Smith Jr. looks forward to a highly productive and exciting year of digital progress. Be sure to subscribe to my channel for semi-weekly content (we posted over 65 videos in 2019) that will hopefully inspire the inner performer in you as well!