Derek Watkins


I'm a Graphics Editor at The New York Times, where I variously work as a designer, developer, reporter and geographer to visually present the news.

Norway the Slow Way


The New York Times, September 2014 Tools used: Illustrator, D3js, Javascript, GDAL/OGR.
A Journey in Which I Travel North, on the World’s Most Beautiful Voyage, Searching for the Specter of My Grandfather and a Glimpse of the Ever-Elusive Midnight Sun.

Assessing the Damage and Destruction in Gaza


The New York Times, August 2014 Tools used: Photoshop, Illustrator, GDAL/OGR.
We used Landsat 8 imagery and UNOSAT damage assessments during Israel's 2014 invasion of Gaza to trace the contours of destruction across the region.

A Rogue State Along Two Rivers


The New York Times, July 2014 Tools used: Photoshop, Illustrator, D3js, GDAL/OGR.
An examination of how ISIS came to control such large swaths of territory, framed by the meanders of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers.

The Iraq-ISIS Conflict in Maps, Photos and Video


The New York Times, February 2014 Tools used: Illustrator, Photoshop, D3js, Node.js, GDAL/OGR, QGIS, Arcmap.
Maps showing the development, activities and consequences of the ISIS terrorist group in Iraq and Syria.

How Russia Took Control of Crimea


The New York Times, February 2014 Tools used: Illustrator, Photoshop, GDAL/OGR, ArcMap.
A series of maps covering several weeks of protests, government overthrows, and military maneuvers in Ukraine and Crimea, including a large print spread showing how Russia invaded the peninsula.

Long-Lived Greatness


The New York Times, February 2014 Tools used: R, D3js.
A scatter plot comparing Derek Jeter's remarkable longevity to the performance other shortstops.

An Olympics in the Shadow of a War Zone


The New York Times, February 2014 Tools used: AfterEffects, Illustrator, Photoshop, Javascript, GDAL/OGR, ArcMap.
Maps contextualizing the Caucasus region and explaining the fears of terrorist attacks during the Sochi Olympics.

Who Owns the Arctic


The New York Times, December 2013 Tools used: Illustrator, Photoshop, Node.js, D3js, GDAL/OGR.
Broad overview of the status of the Arctic region in terms of geopolitics and environmental resources. Accompanied an op-ed in the New York Times' Sunday Review section.

Mapping the Destruction of Typhoon Haiyan


The New York Times, November 2013 Tools used: Illustrator, Photoshop .
Various maps produced on a breaking news deadline outlining the damage caused to the Philippines by Typhoon Haiyan on November 8th. Awarded a bronze medal at the Malofiej 22 infographics competition.

A Game of Shark and Minnow


The New York Times Magazine, October 2013 Tools used: Illustrator, Photoshop, BASH scripts, GDAL/OGR, ArcMap.
Multimedia treatment of a story about geopolitics as lived by 8 Filipino soldiers on a rusting ship grounded on a reef in the South China Sea. Nominated for a News and Documentary Emmy award.

Reshaping New York


The New York Times, August 2013 Tools used: Illustrator, Photoshop, GDAL/OGR, ArcMap.
Retrospective on changes to the landscape of New York City during Bloomberg's tenure as mayor. Awarded a silver medal from the Society of News Design, and silver (print) and gold (online) medals at the Malofiej 22 infographics competition.

Riding the New Silk Road


The New York Times, July 2013 Tools used: Illustrator, Photoshop, D3js, BASH scripts, ArcMap, GDAL/OGR.
Multimedia and map elements visualize Hewlett-Packard's overland rail route for transporting electronics from China to Europe.

In China, A Staggering Migration


The New York Times, June 2013 Tools used: Illustrator, Photoshop, BASH scripts, ArcMap, GDAL/OGR.
A video flyover and a print graphic: two approaches to visualizing the scale of China's proposal to move 250 million individuals into cities. Awarded a bronze medal at the Malofiej 22 infographics competition.

Few Women on Some Senate Committees


The New York Times, June 2013 Tools used: D3js.
An isometric graphic charting the history of women's presence on various committees in the U.S. senate.

Corridor of Death and Damage


The New York Times, May 2013 Tools used: Illustrator, ArcMap.
An early view of damage from a tornado that slashed Moore, OK in May 2013. Published 2 days after the storm, based on photo analyses by the graphics desk. Awarded a bronze medal at the Malofiej 22 infographics competition.

Snow plows in New York City


February 2013 Tools used: Photoshop, Ruby, Javascript.
A timelapse of plowed streets in New York after a blizzard that came through the area in early 2013.

Superstorm Sandy


Columbia University Spatial Information Design Lab, January 2013 Tools used: Illustrator, Photoshop, D3js, ArcMap, ImageMagick.
A project using maps, census data, and aerial photography to reveal the impacts of the storm along the New Jersey and New York coasts.

Counties Blue and Red Move to the Right


The New York Times, November 2012 Tools used: Illustrator, ArcMap.
Two-page print graphic illustrating differences between the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections. Awarded a silver medal from the Society of News Design, and a gold medal and best printed map award at the Malofiej 21 infographics competition.

Shifting Conference Alignments


The New York Times, August 2012 Tools used: Illustrator, HTML/CSS, ArcMap.
Conference realignments for American football teams in 2012 and 2013.

The World Records That Fell


The New York Times, August 2012 Tools used: Illustrator, Javascript.
An exploration of world records as part of the Times' 2012 Olympics coverage. Joins historical data with live results to show how modern records compare to past performances.

Interactive "Islands of Mankind"


April 2012 Tools used: Illustrator, Javascript, QGIS.
Interactive global population density map inspired by William Bunge's "Islands of Mankind".

Posted


June 2011 Tools used: Processing.
An animated map built with Processing that uses the spread of post offices to show historical US expansion into continent.

Picturing Urban Decay


April 2011 Tools used: Illustrator, Photoshop, ArcMap.
Geotagged flickr photos of "urbandecay" reveal the perceptions of blight by photographers across the United States.

Generic Toponyms of U.S. Streams


March 2011 (Revision) Tools used: Illustrator, ArcMap.
A map of every stream in the United States, color-coded based on the generic portion of their name (like "brook" or "bayou").
Email: dwtkns at gmail dot com
Twitter: @dwtkns