All posts by Qingqing Chen

My site

My site is

Firstly, I think my website shows my interest in photography. I put a slideshow on the main page, using the plugin in WordPress. The slideshow shows the featured image of every story I published on my site and a brief introduction to the story.

My logo is a simple hand-writing style. I put “reporter” under my name logo for describing what I am now, of course.  I divided the content in four categories, which are clean and easy to navigate. I enlarged text after I showed the site to the class last time, taking suggestions from classmates.

I don’t know how to put a plugin to share my site on Facebook, so I didn’t do that. On the main page, three logos redirect to my twitter account, my youtube account and my mail.

In the category of  publication, I’d like to scan some of my articles published on newspapers or some of my clips diffused, but I didn’t have time for doing it. So I’ll keep updating, for sure!

WordPress is fun, it’s a place to put all your unpublished articles and clips. I think it’s useful. The only thing I didn’t figure out is Jetpack, I still didn’t get into it after tried hundreds times with my J-school account username, other account username, and different passwords…


Photo Essay: One Year After Sandy

By Qingqing CHEN

One year after Hurricane Sandy hit New York City, damaging more than 150,000 homes and killing 43 people, Staten Island, one of the boroughs most affected by the storm is still recovering. Some of the Staten Islanders remain dissatisfied with the pace of recovery.

Glenys Borg, 68, lived next door to one of those killed by the storm, on Kiswick Street, Staten Island. Borg said that the neighborhood was devastated by the surge and 5-feet-water came into her house. She lived in the house with blue roofs and her daughter used to live in the house in backyard, which was completely flooded during Sandy. One year after the storm, they were still not able to restore the house in backyard in lack of financial support.



Borg was always keeping some legal documents with her as references. She said that she had an issue with the contractor, who left without finishing repairing her house. She also has an issue with her flood insurance company and her mortgage company. She had tried to negotiate with them since almost a year.



Every time Borg received the checks from the flood insurance company, she had to send them to her mortgage company. The mortgage company then made other checks for Borg and her contractor. Borg said that the contactor complained about the slow money paid by the mortgage company. One day, he came to claim that Borg owned him money and left.


Borg still didn’t have heat in her house. She randomly went to the house in backyard. As the flood insurance company wouldn’t send money to Borg anymore because of the issue between Borg and her contractor, Borg was worried that she would not able to afford the restoration of her backyard house.


After her daughter put a large amount of her stuffs in Borg’s living room, she made a temporary coach bed and piled the stuffs in the middle of the room. Borg also stored some of the clothes, books and daily supplies in backyard house where the devastating result of Sandy could still be seen: nothing but fragments of wood.


Borg made an appointment with a new contractor at 2 p.m on October 9. She was trying to figure out if she could repair the backyard house in an affordable way.


Borg didn’t show him directly the house behind of hers. She led him to another backyard house across the street. It was much bigger than her backyard house. The contractor calculated all the things that needed to be rebuilt, including electricity and heat. He then gave an approximate number to Borg.


Borg said that it was so expensive that she couldn’t afford it. She tried to bargain with the contractor for a cheaper price.


After Sandy, Borg went frequently to the “Midland Neighborhood” tent. She said that people there were very helpful. They offered food, clothes and books. Borg recalled that it was a total chaos after her house had been flooded. She fortunately found the white-black shirt that she wore in the tent.


Borg said that some of her neighbors left Staten Island and never returned back after Sandy. Sometimes, she looked into their vacant abandoned houses. Borg said that she would never leave her house, even though another hurricane was approaching. “It’s my home.” She said.


After Sandy, Borg stayed with her son in another house on Staten Island before returning home. Her daughter had stayed in the shelter till June. Now she returned back to her mother’s house and picked up her four children from school in the afternoon. Borg did some cleaning work everyday. She said that she wasn’t sure when she would finish all the repairing work and she couldn’t go through again this experience.


Nicole Malliotakis, a local assemblywoman, used to help Borg fixing the leak in her house. Borg contacted Malliotakis to update her repairing work. She also wanted to ask if she could give any advices in terms of the issue with the flood insurance company and the mortgage company.


Borg drove to Malliotakis’ office to talk about her issue. After the appointment with the contractor, she said that she would contact other companies to see if they could offer a cheaper price.


Malliotakis said that Borg was not the only person who had been in a slow relief process after Sandy and they had already filed more than 1000 cases.


Malliotakis asked the chief of staff, Paul Marrone to take down notes when Borg told about her issue. As Borg said that she was intended to apply for a loan to repair her backyard house, Malliotakis suggested that she might contact the state department of bank for more information. Malliotakis asked Marrone to call Borg’s insurance company first to see if they could find a possible solution as soon as possible.



Borg still waited for the answer from her flood insurance company.



Assignment#1 Talking about photography

This photo impressed me as I saw clearly the desperation of this unknown artist, Frank. The photographer captured his facial expression: fine wrinkled around the eyes, hair tousled, looking straight ahead.

In terms of objects in the picture, I appreciate the details photographer captured: newspaper, cracks in the wall and decorative duck. The most interesting detail is the light, which highlighted the character in the story.

People may say the picture is not fully balanced in terms of color. One side is bright; the other side is dim. The way of highlighting the main character in the picture contributes to the main idea of the story. The distinction between two sides, bright and dim, could be seen as the beauty of the picture.

A Syrian little girl, while wrapping the rope around, didn’t look at the lens. Her hair was fluttering in the wind. That makes the picture vivid. We can imagine that the photography squatted on the ground while taking the picture. His perspective was from down to top.

We need different positions when we shoot people: from down to up, from up to down or eye-level. It depends on what kind of story we handle with. When it comes with children, we shoot from down to up, I guess?

The picture of the little boy with his dog on his back seems impressive. The subject of this photo is strong: the boy, fleeing his home after floodwaters brought by monsoon rain, didn’t forget his dog. The boy and the dog, both of them, were looking at the same direction. Fear and anxiety could be seen in their eyes.