View Full Version : Burning Man
Hi everyone. I just was just looking at Q-Tuan's website and noticed that he had been out to Burning Man.
I've been involved in the festival for awhile now and thought I'd invite any large format photograhers out there who are going this year to stop by and say hello. Some friends and I are building a Bavarian style biergarten (complete with polka band!) on the playa. We will be located on the Esplinade at 7:00 I believe. Please feel free to stop by for a beer or two.
If you've never been and are interested in just what Burning Man's about, go to www.burningman.com. There's a lot of great photography on the site as well.
I actually didn't attend BM, although I would have liked to do so. I happened to be there one morning after coming on the playa for sunrise. I always thought that an interesting project would be to set up an installation there with a 4x5 and tons P/N polaroid film, and give the polaroid print to potential subjects. I am sure one would get tons of interesting negatives. Maybe one could even talk Polaroid into sponsoring ?
I spent several minutes surfing the linked site. NOWHERE that I could find did it mention WHERE the damn thing is! California? Boston? Mexico? F**k 'em!
Bill, It is in the Black Rock Desert, a few miles Northeast of Gerlach, Nevada, about a hundred miles North of Reno, Nevada. This area is also very interesting at other times of the year, without the festival, although you should never go out on the playa in the winter or spring without checking at the gas station on the edge of town.
David R Munson
Man, if I could make I'd be all over Burning Man. Bring my 8x10 and my Nikon and just ride my fixed gear around photographing like mad and having a great time. Stuck in Chicago, though...
Sorry, I should have mentioned where it was. Also, I'd like to second Tom's comment on going out to the Black Rock desert outside of Buring Man. It is definately a most strange and fantastic place, worth serious exploration. One recent book that comes to mind is called: The Black Rock Desert by William Fox, with large format pictures by Mark Klett.
As to the polaroid idea, I'm fairly sure someone was doing that a couple of years back, though I didn't catch his name. There is also a guy who sets up a big camera obscura in the shape of a pyramid; very cool. I think there's even a group of folks that run a small darkroom out there!
During the week or so of Burning Man, I believe "Black Rock City" is something like the third largest city in Nevada. And then it disappears...
How to get there - taken from the survival guide (http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/how_to_get_there.html)
If you go, please say "hi from Ellis" to my friend "Barter Bob" from Houston.
I will be going to Burning Man this year - I have my ticket, but I'm trying to decide how much camera equipment to take. I have all of DSLR, 35mm, MF RF, MF SLR, 4x5 each with a range of lenses and currently I'm thinking of DSLR and MF SLR. I could be easily persuaded that the 4x5 is necessary, but I'm doubtful that things will be static enough.
Anyone any opinions - preferably after having been in the past.
I'd say from past experience (I've been going since 1995) that bringing the 4x5 is most definately worth it. People build the most amazing artwork out there, much of it 'static'. Also, the enviroment surrounding the festival itself is truly extraordinary; I think you would regret not being able to shoot LF.
That said, I will warn you that the Black Rock desert is murder on camera equipment. The dust out there is relentless. I would recommend many ziploc bags, or even a pelican-type case, as well as cans of compressed air, etc. I'm going to shoot quick-loads so I don't have to deal with loading/unloading film.
Please stop by the Black Rock Biergarten and say hello.
dirty stanky hippies, bad music and bad art.
I'm guessing you haven't been out there. Yes, there are some dirty stanky hippies, some bad music, and some bad art. However, there are also some pretty amazing individuals, some fantastic music, and some truly staggering works of art. Basically, there's representatives from the whole spectrum of creative society, with everything that entails...
I've never met one person who was not totally blown away by Burning Man. Ever.
If you change you mind, stop by The "Black Rock Biergarten" for a pint or three.
P.S. I miss my Ducati...
can i brang a box of grenades?
if not, thanks but no thanks,
p.s. i've seen pix. believe me, i ain't interested. and no, i ain't never owned a chemical bros. album neethah, sad sheep. had a few kraftwerke, sure. seen genesis p'orridge und zee youth a way back when. the album leaf is good though, kinda soundtracky, sub pop. try 'em. go easy on the x there youngin. t'aint like the olden days.
Yeah, back in the olden days, you actually could have brought that box of grenades; my first year out there (way back in '95) there was a drive-by shooting range, where you could blow away Barney and other such stuffed targets. I'll never forget the sight of a guy on a motorcycle, totally naked save for his gun holster, riding past, blazing away at I can't remember what. Anyway, I guess the cost of an expanding civilization (in '95 there were around 2500 people-last year 30,000+) is increased regulation. Damn The Man!
It's still worth going however.
And yes, we'll be bustin' out some Kraftwerk in the ol' Biergarten. We also have some polka bands lined up. And lederhosen. And women in St. Pauli Girl outfits. And 12 kegs of beer. And two bottles of real-deal absinthe. And yes, even some large format cameras.
You're missin' out.
i've had the real deal,
i'm partial to anejo despite it. see, me and my buds do our own 'burning man' of sorts every year, since time immemorial too. we keep out the strays and by doing just that, keep it pure. no sponsors, no web nurds... all the guns a dozen guys can carry, homemade mortars that fire 20lb. hunks of pig iron, flame throwers... piezo-ignited potato cannons, class 3 exotic weps of every stripe. one clip of 10mm through an mp3 on 3 round burst beats dogshit outta yer overblown rave, buddy.
trust me on that,
p.s. upon yon gloaming, we smoke the chili bong, drank gin and are reborn.
Sounds like your friends and my friends would get along real good. See, we generally go out to Black Rock "off season" at least once a year to do similar to what you have described. Ever shot a propane tank? Let me tell you, they blow up very nicely. Also, a toy "supersoaker" filled up with gasoline makes for a terrific flamethrower.
The Anejo is a given. I like the Hornitos myself.
As for the wicked gin, none for me thanks. Had a bad experience once when I was a kid and it has never forgiven me.
I wonder if any other large format folks are reading this; probably think they took a wrong turn somewhere...
sounds much more interesting than burnt mens. one of my bro's is a fed. he brings the most interesting weapons. truth be told, welp, i can't rightly tell the truth. last year, the shooting contest devolved into a flame fest. we used starter fluid spray cans(ether under pressure) at about ten feet as targets. our spot is quite cramped so we've concentrated on delivery systems to lob our larger payloads down river. interesting stuff you can do with clusters of model rocket motors. made what i called 'bigass' bottle rockets with d120 estes motors. the motor's recovery charge is a elegant way to ignite your payload.
built my first flamethrower in 5th grade. one of those pump up bug-sprayers and a soup can holding a radshack micro torch as a pilot. set more fires than i could put out.
SRL made a flourescent light tube launcher on a vid i seen once. powered by compressed air, i believe. i've got less than 90 days to come up with something cool. it's either that or build a shoulder-fired TOW-style. i built a few in junior high but over the counter model rocket motors got a lot bigger since those days. did cluster pipebombs too, way back when. clusters of 1" cold-rolled steel in 5 gallon buckets of cement. got any ideas fer a quickie? HE is out. but big firecrackers are doable.
save yer money on burning man... invest in 4f black powder instead,
p.s. hornitos is fine... patron too. the best stuff ain't got a label though. just that funky little baggy.
Wow. I have to admit I think you're a little out of my league as far as building creative weaponry. Truth be told, although I enjoy guns and such as much as the next guy, my primary role among my Burning Man friends is that of 'documentarian' (being the photographer of the lot).
A comrade of mine is building what he calls the "Feur-Stein" this year (to go with our chosen biergarten shtick). Basically, it's exactly what it sounds like; a giant metal beer-stein that will shoot out balls of fire on our whim. I wish I could give you more technical info on how it operates, but as I said, it's not quite my realm.
Anyway, as far as ideas go, I would guide you to the Survival Research Labs website (www.srl.org) but I'm guessing you've already been there...
Oh my God. I'll never buy another Bic lighter after reading all of this . . .
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