All posts by James O'Keefe

Latest Fleet Additions

Finally got around to photographing and uploading my latest set of 1/2400 ship miniatures. I cannot claim that I painted the ships. That honor goes to gak8346 who has a far better eye for painting small modern ships than I do. I’ll stick to other miniatures.

I played with focus stacking and using HeliconFocus got a number of photos of ships at oblique angles. Some post-Cold War GHQ ships:

GHQ Type 52D Destroyer 1/2400 miniature GHQ Type 54A Frigate 1/2400 miniature GHQ Arleigh Burke Destroyer 1/2400 miniature

I based the Arleigh Burke IIA destroyer as the USS Hudner, which I photographed when it was being commissioned in Boston.

GHQ Independence LCS 1/2400 miniature

And one from Dutch Fleet Naval Miniatures on Shapeways:

Spearhead EPF post-Cold War 1/2400 miniature

As well as some Cold War era ships:

PFC C-in-C Spruance VLS Destroyer 1/2400 miniature PFC C-in-C Spruance Destroyer 1/2400 miniature PFC C-in-C Garcia Frigate 1/2400 miniature

Some of the mini-carriers nice and based:

GHQ JMSDF Izumo Helicopter Destroyer 1/2400 miniature - based GHQ USS Wasp LHD 1/2400 miniature - based GHQ Ōsumi LST 1/2400 miniature - based

Finally finished the Tarawa-class LHA:

PFC-CinC USS Peleliu LHA 1/2400 miniature - based

Bill’s Models was nice enough to create some ships at my request, so I had to get them, including some USNS RO-ROs:

USNS Bobo maritime prepositioning ship 1/2400 miniature - based USNS Bob Hope prepositioning RO-RO 1/2400 miniature - based USNS Gordon RO-RO 1/2400 miniature - based USNS Shughart RO-RO 1/2400 miniature - based USNS Watson RO-RO 1/2400 miniature - based

And some merchant ships:

LNG Tanker 1/2400 miniature - based LNG Square Tanker 1/2400 miniature - based Dry Stores Cargo Ship 1/2400 miniature - based

They are all decent ships, but if you are starting out with adding merchant or RO-ROs to your collection, I recommend getting some of the US ships from Viking Forge such as the Sealift Pacific, Cape Isabel and Algol.

There are more pictures from this upload in my 1/2400 Naval Miniatures photo album as well as pictures I shared in the past. You can just cycle through them below:

1/2400 Naval Miniatures

NEOWISE

In July, my sons and I went to Danehy Park in Cambridge to see Comet NEOWISE. We got there before sunset to find a good position on the hill in the park.

Sunset from Danehy Park

It wasn’t the best location, even besides the mosquitos that came out after dusk, but it was a good opportunity to try time lapse/astro photography.

A night out with Comet NEOWISE

It wasn’t easy to find Comet NEOWISE with the naked eye, so I pointed my camera in the right direction, took a long exposure photograph, then checked if the comet was in the photograph. Whether it was there or not, I repositioned the camera to either find it or get a better picture of it.

A night out with Comet NEOWISE

It was an iterative process.

A night out with Comet NEOWISE

I played with the duration of the photographs experiencing that long durations at high focal lengths result in star trails. Some had a good balance.

A night out with Comet NEOWISE

The next day, clad in bug spray and long pants, my son and I tried photographing the comet from the top of the Alewife MBTA stop garage in Cambridge. The combination of the clouds and the bright garage lights hindered my efforts to get decent pictures. It was a good scouting opportunity. Unfortunately, the weather since hasn’t been great so it was good we went out the earlier night.

Flowers and a Spider

Photographed flowers in the yard recently. No use of focus peaking this time, but I used HeliconFocus to stitch the sharp part of images together. Click on the images to view them in more detail. You can then zoom into them further.

One among many Raspberry dewdrops Getting the day started The real raspberry creator Pretty weed

Also found this spider in our house. It was a mostly willing model, but eventually it had had enough.

Ready for my closeup Done with modeling

All images taken with my Sigma 105mm f/2.8 macro lens on my Nikon Z 50 via the Nikon FTZ adapter.

Boston Facial Recognition Ban Hearing Today

Reposting this from the Massachusetts Pirate Party. If you live in Boston, do contact your city councilor and tell them to support this ordinance. Details below.

Today at 3pm, Boston City Council’s Committee on Government Operations will discuss a proposed ordinance to ban face surveillance in Boston. The hearing will be by Zoom meeting and the public may watch this meeting via live stream at boston.gov/city-council-tv.

It is too late to address the committee, but you can still provide written testimony. Details below. The ACLU put together a toolkit for activists that includes model testimony. There are also public education resources available at https://aclum.org/presspause.

Please attend the hearing and help out in the following ways:

  1. Sign and share the ACLU’s petition in support of the campaign: https://action.aclu.org/petition/ban-face-surveillance-boston;
  2. Encouraging your friends and family in Boston to provide testimony in support of this ordinance;
  3. If you live in Boston, contact your city councilor and tell them to support this ordinance. You can find a list and email them at https://www.boston.gov/departments/city-council. The ACLU has a toolkit for activists that includes contact information for the city councilors.

Written comments may be sent to the Committee or staff email (below) and will be made a part of the record and available to all Councilors.

Email:  ccc.go@boston.gov/christine.odonnell@boston.gov Attn:  Christine O’Donnell, Docket #0683 

Fax Number:  617-635-4203 Attn:  Christine O’Donnell, Docket #0683 

Mail Address:  Docket #0683, City Council, City Hall, 5th Floor, Boston MA  02201

Rhododendron flower

With the warmer weather of Spring, our Rhododendron is blooming. I continued my adventure with macro photography and focus stacking by taking multiple images of some of the flowers. This one was the best:

Rhododendron flower

I zoomed in on my camera’s screen and manually focused the lens for each photograph. Next time I will try using focus peaking.