(9/1/05 - 9/4/05)
Continued from the previous small page 3, this is "SMALL PAGE 4".
Below is Chris Pirazzi relaxing in the afternoon in his camp "Nose Fish". (Notice the ski goggles around his neck, they help keep out the dust). Chris was in a camp with James Fleishman, Tom Davis, and a few others. I worked with Chris at Silicon Graphics in the digital media group. Chris contributes an "interactive video wall" called "MEZ: Real-Time Impressionistic Video" at Burning Man where it streams live video of anybody or anything standing in front of the wall (see below) and then changes and modifies it in an impressionistic way in real time. For example, your face and body might be recognizable, but be made up of little triangles or little George Bush heads as you dance around. Very high tech stuff, Chris is one of the smartest guys I've ever had the pleasure to work with. Chris wrote all the software himself just for amusement. To see what he's done as a professional video engineer and programmer, check out his work on the "Lurker's Guide". For one tiny example, read: "Fields: Why Video Is Crucially Different from Graphics" as a sample.
Below is the MEZ video wall at Burning Man 2005. Here it is during the day for a clear photo. The truck behind it has the projector in it (it shines through the passenger side window to protect the expensive projection unit in the harsh desert dusty environment). Click here to see a technical description and videos of this.
Below is a photo taken by James Fleishman of people enjoying MEZ at night at Burning Man. Click here to see a lot more photos and QuickTime videos of what this looks like in action.
The "Black Rock City Rangers" drove around in official vehicles like the one below. There were also real live Sheriff police cars driving around, but much fewer, and they didn't really have much to do or hassle people much. It's a pretty peaceful crowd at Burning Man.
There were a few of these Burning Man Hospitals around, like the one shown below.
A random street corner in Black Rock city of "Delirium and 3:00", just to show you what the street signs looked like when you were trying to find some specific place or address.
A roving party bus art car.
I think this is a piranha art car.
In a corner of a random camp, Kermit the Frog was being crucified. Stuff like this is ALL OVER, you can't open your eyes without seeing something funny, interesting, or unique.
Very busy looking art car.
Mouthy kind of random art car.
This robot was in one camp.
Art car made out of a VW Bug.
Some random interesting camp structures. Use your horizontal scrollbar to see the whole panorama.
Since the above photo was kind of washed out, here is the right hand side of it as a stand alone picture so you can see the spider-web type construction thingy.
Rhino art car.
I have no idea what this pointy art car thing is supposed to be. Wait, maybe a scorpion?
This was one of the MOST IMPRESSIVE art cars found at Burning Man. It is an ENORMOUS two mast sailing ship party bus art car. Notice it is only inches off the ground for the best effect of looking like it is sailing through the playa. People would be dancing and hanging out on this monstrous piece of beautiful art all day and night as it sailed from one event to another, or just sailed across the playa. Also notice the guy in the aft crow's nest. Click on the photo below for a much larger zoomed in version.
I like this picture, it is very "Burning Man". This woman has her white face mask to keep from breathing dust, she has her goggles, and she didn't forget her purse or dress, although she also has enormous playa boots on.
Notice the big speakers on the party bus below. This is not really an art car or party bus, it actually are just self-transporting speaker systems so they could setup a dance party quickly in the desert, then move it around at a whim. Update 2010 - I'm told this is built by a group called "Space Cowboys" and you can find more info here: http://www.spacecowboys.org/
Picnic table art car with coolers.
Deer head mounted on the main street as you left Black Rock City to walk out onto the "Playa" where all the burning art was at.
This "Water Taxi" boat pulled the high platform behind it, but later I saw the platform roving under it's own power.
In the picture below is a very tall swing with a woman in it. The swing was open to anybody who wanted to play in it.
Hula hoops in this camp, 4 or 5 people were dancing and hula hooping to music.
Very colorful art car.
Here is that thing being towed earlier by the "water taxi" art car. In this picture it was cruising around the playa under its own power.
At night video was projected out of the booth on the left onto the blank face on the right. Usually a full face video, which was very spooky. You could see and hear any random person in 3D talking.
Boat thingy art car sort of.
This large pink evil bunny art car was parked in the corner of somebody's camp when I walked by.
Below is a picture of "Black Rock Roller Disco", these people were all roller skating around in circles. You could "rent" skates here (for free actually).
Cuddle Princess Island, just a random camp I walked by.
Pink looking art car.
Party bus art car thingy.
To the right of center in the photo is a "brain" art car. On the left notice the woman are wearing high boots with big 1960s looking fake fur. These were VERY popular on attractive woman at Burning Man, which really bothers me. I don't like the idea that there are "style trends for attractive hip people" forming at Burning Man, it is SUPPOSED to be about being artsy and wacky, not "fitting into the fashion forward style trends". Next year I'll probably hear somebody remark "Did you see those furry boots that person was wearing? That is soooo 'last year' it is embarrassing."
Colorful art car.
Scorpion art car.
This RV pulled in with this enormous inflatable cow on the roof. The cow is about 3/4 full of air, so it was bending and swaying in the wind, very very funny.
Giraffe with pink lipstick art car.
I laughed as these two matching "Bee-Girl" women bicycled by in their costumes.
Wow, I can't believe you made it this far, and are actually reading this! Well, that's it, that's everything I have. Just as a quick list to remind myself if I go to Burning Man again, here is a useful list of random things to bring:
Glow Sticks!! - VERY IMPORTANT - for safety at night so inebriated bicyclists can see you
Flashlights - I like the little LED keychain ones, convenient, bright, long lasting
Eye Goggles - clear glass color for night time use when the dust storms come up
White Breathing Face Mask - not totally necessary, you can also use a scarf to breathe through.
Sunglasses - the sun is very bright
Camelback or water bottles - dehydration is your enemy in the desert
Poncho - freak showers come and go, some years are wet, you don't want to get soaked
Backpack - you take long 3 or even 5 hour excursions away from camp, you need to bring the goggles, masks, water, poncho, extra warmth layer, etc along with you in case you need it.
Sun block / Sun screen - Burning Man is at 4,000 feet elevation, and the sun is alarmingly strong
*cheap* sleeping bag - you will probably have to throw it away afterwards because of the dust and dirt
Painter Plastic - put down on the floor of the RV or tent to preserve it. The dust and mud get into everything.
Bicycle - absolutely necessary to get around at all quickly
Earplugs - the dance/rave/parties go all night, it's nice to be able to sleep
Baby Wipes - quickly get clean of the dust before bedtime
FRS radio - so you and your friends can find each other, CELL PHONES DO NOT WORK (no signal)
Lawn Chairs - in the afternoons everybody just hangs out, you might as well be comfortable
Throw Rugs/Cheap Carpets - keep the dust down in camp, bathroom mats work well
Battery operated fans - hard to stay cool, these are cheap, run a long time, work well.
Handheld GPS - to mark friend's camps, find your camp quickly, etc. Click here for a Garmin compatible GPS map of the 2005 Black Rock City Burning Man Camp layout. Some people laugh at this, but I was caught in a whiteout sandstorm at 2am on the playa, nobody could see 4 feet in any direction, and there are no landmarks and you are a full mile away from camp. Some people around me were even panicked, I just pulled out my GPS and started walking calmly back to camp wearing my goggles and mask. For $99, get a Garmin Rino which combines an FRS and GMRS radio with a GPS in a tiny package the size of a cell phone. These are wonderful, for bonus points when your buddy talks to you his location appears on the display with his name and a little smiley face, just walk right to him.
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