How the Flaming Lotus Girls Propose…

We don’t exactly get down on one knee, but…

We started off so civilized with kale salad and wine. However, soon enough, we were yelling at our computer screens, and whiskey may have been involved at some point. Catie, Jess and I got together — with Pouneh and Mills in over the interwebernets — to finish up the proposal to Burning Man.

Thanks to lots of work from many flaming lotus girls and boys, we didn’t have to stay until dawn. Proposals can be a complicated affair. There’s some art-speak (which I’m not that great at, but Jess is), physical descriptions of the structure and effects, build schedules, plumbing diagrams….and there’s the budget.

Oh, the budget. Its so not sexy, but I have to tell you about it.  The budget FLG submits is a line item budget. That means we have thought about and accounted for every penny we are requesting. Quotes are gotten from metal dealers. Linear footage for propane hose and electrical cable has been calculated. Nothing has been “guesstimated.” We do this down to, literally, the nuts and bolts. This part of the proposal is tedious, time-consuming and mostly unexciting (I do get a little giddy when figuring out the fire effects budget, but well, you know.).

Despite the minutia, there is a certain amount of satisfaction in the resulting excel spreadsheet. Even more so than the drawings or physical descriptions, the budget is what makes the project closer to reality to me. Considering how many bolts we might need makes the build tangible; I can envision us  on playa, the sculpture arising amid us, wrenches in hand.

So. Proposal. In. On time. 2 hours early even. And… well, I probably shouldn’t share this, but… just don’t let burning man know you’ve seen.  We had some amazing illustrations done. Really lovely, and it was a pleasure to work with people to share the thing in my head. This is an illustration of a part of Tympani, the cochlea, from Sierra Murphree.

As you can see, we got a handle on exposing the interior spiral of the cochlea. This was very much due to John DeVenzia and Rebecca Anders (and a considerable amount of beer) coming up with a design and model of the cochlea that completes the already existing model of Tympani. These aren’t pretty illustrations, but I do love the models. Don’t mind the dirty foot prints.

Stay tuned for updates on this project and more!


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