Review of Hiding in The Shadows by Chris Stolz

Review of Hiding in The Shadows by Chris Stolz


Chris Stolz has written an important treatise on the subject of black art illusions and methodology that should be studied by magicians & illusionists of all levels. “Hiding in The Shadows” serves as a neo-classical progression from Gary Darwin’s “Inexpensive Illusions” and Don Drake’s “Black Art Breakthroughs”.

Not since S. H. Sharpe’s “Conjuror’s Optical Secrets” has there been such a technical discussion on lighting theory for illusion performance. Chris also shares several lighting set-ups that are very clear with the aid of diagrams. This chapter alone is worth the price of the book.


Of course, no illusion book will be complete without illusion methods and plans. Chris details 10 illusions, all that use Black Art in different ways; some as a direct method and some in subtle ways to achieve greater deceptive results.

Note, there are no in-depth explanations of building methods or construction plans. But, there is more than enough diagrams and dimensions (to be used as a guide) for an experienced builder or illusionist to put the actual props together.

I particularly like “Light the Way” which I think will look surreal on the right proscenium stage. “Clear Passage” is a practical (except maybe for the size) walking through pane of glass effect with a surprise twist. And, “Scatter Box” is a clear production box that uses the BA in a subtle way.

Highly recommended for anyone interested to study or perform Black Art illusions. “Hiding in The Shadows” is available direct from Chris HERE.


    • Never got those books before they were discontinued.However, I learned through online chat rooms blackart and tip over trunk methods were used a lot in 1 book.Seeing how the masked magician ( not the greatest performer) fooled me several times, even old Grant illusions can really work even now.So many methods like the flashing eyes are unknown now.Woodbury tends to cater to pro, Andrew Mayne to beginner.Blackart is the best way to start in illusions.