Here's a photo from the USS Yorktown, which is now a museum ship near Charleston, SC. The Yorktown is an Essex class aircraft carrier that was commissioned from 1943 to 1970, seeing action in WWII, Korea, Vietnam, and as the recovery ship for the Apollo 8 command module.

Like any aircraft carrier, the Yorktown is magnificent to see in real life. The aircraft, hangers, engines, catapults, and battle gear are all super interesting of course. But I'm particularly fascinated by the stuff for day-to-day life – the mess hall, mail room, crew quarters, bunks, lockers, heads, barber shop, doctor's/dentists offices, mail room, and so on. On one level, a carrier is a devastating and awe-inspiring weapon that only a few countries have the means and need to own. But on another level, it's a small town floating on the ocean where people live out as-normal-as-feasible lives.

My family was fortunate to get to "camp" on aircraft carriers three times, sleeping in crew quarters, on Scouting field trips. I'm telling you, that's the best way to see a carrier! You can roam the ship at night, without crowds, taking your time and reading all the exhibit labels and signage. I tend to get caught up in the sweeping grandiose photo opportunities on a carrier, but there are countless details and I try to shoot as many of those I can as well.