Sunday, December 12, 2010

2nd Annual Fleet Review

A few years ago when researching color for my miniature of Graf Spee I discovered the King George VI's coronation fleet review. Last year, I saw a short clip of aerial film, which I've not been able to find again since. Seeing that many ships in one place at one time was . . . breathtaking. And I decided, I've got a decent harbor and a couple of hundred ships and boats. Maybe I should have a fleet review. I recall it was about this time of year, as I got a December order in the middle of the thing and incorporated them into the review, just to see how they'd look.

Well, this year, just before my birthday, I decided to make it an annual tradition. And this time I was smart enough to take pictures. So I present to you my own Second Annual Fleet Review. I wish I could show you just how impressive a sight it is to see the masts of two hundred miniature ships fading to the horizon when you view them from eye level, but it's hard to take it in with a camera, and the flash creates a contrast that obscures all but the nearest ships.

So this oblique view will have to suffice.

(The harbor isn't in the loveliest of surroundings, what with the warehouses, factories, and barracks.And the lighting isn't great, since it's underground. Further, the brown water is a bit unsightly. I suppose I could dye it blue, or even just lay out a sheet, but the review was rather impromptu, as you can see. The next will be more elaborate, no doubt.)

Further, I took bird's eye views of the different nations that constitute my own private fleet. Here is the US Navy contingent:

The Royal Navy is, of course, also quite well represented:

The Imperial Japanese Navy is also quite intimidating:

The French Fleet is a good bit smaller and still somewhat more drab, not having benefited from the modernizations that other fleets have been afforded:

The Italian Fleet is, at least, colorful:

The German Fleet is, of course, a shadow of its Great War glory, but at least it's here:

(The Russians, Greeks, Turks, Chinese, and Brazilians, for instance, haven't even made it yet.)

To finish things out, here are a few Norse and Swedish merchantmen, and some representative tugs, lighters, barges, and harbor craft. Oh, and two small floating drydocks:

I hope you find this fun and enjoyable. I've certainly had fun building the fleet. I'll try to follow up with a more serious post in the near future.


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