It's NOT what I thought...
Once upon a time I thought magic only happened in my hands. I spent a lot of time in front of a mirror. Mirrors to be exact. I bought three custom mirrors, each about twenty four inches by twenty inches, duct taped them together in a kind of dressing-room arrangement, and put them on my desk.
I was about seventeen years old when I made that, and that very mirror and desk were where I spent the next five, or so, years of my life. I practiced regularly. Mostly coin and card sleights. My bibles were two books, one The Royal Road to Card Magic, by Jean Hugard and Frederick Braue, and The New Modern Coin Magic by J.B. Bobo. Growing up, I did not know what the J.B. stands for!
There is a decaying polaroid photo somewhere of my just hands. I was pretty proud of the amazing stuff I could do. I also worked at a Tannen's, the legendary magic store in New York City, and had, as my friends some of the worlds elite magicians: Martin Nash, David Roth, Darwin Ortiz.
It was years later when I realized that magic, from an audiences perspective, happens in their minds, not my hands. I'm not sure how I made this discovery. Nor do I recall why, but for some lucky reason, I became aware of my audience. Oh, yes, I always knew they were there, but they were kind of an after thought. My hands were so awesome...audience? Pah!
A good friend said to me this very morning, that it isn't magic until there's an audience, AND they're wowed.
P.S. Just did some research on Bobo, and according to Magicpedia (yes, there is place just for magicians to research things such as this) he was “christened with initials only...
Always learning, this Joey Pipia!