I’ve finally gotten around to drawing my functional map of Swatow street, Wan Chai.
Access from Johnston Road for pram/ strollers/ wheelchairs. Everyone else take the stairs from Queen’s Road East.
Lots of cool cafes and trendy takeaway stalls are populating the street, you now see only a few electrical stores and sand/ cement shops left. There’s a friendly stationery shop that is very comprehensive.
It’s loaded up in full resolution and I’ve tried to make the text bigger this time round.
There are all sorts of maps out there, (Google maps being the best hands down for directions) but what I love the most are functional maps.
Functional maps tell you not only where a particular shop is relative to everything else, but what they sell or their specialty. The best maps of this kind were produced by the late Nancy Chandler, whose maps I greatly admire for its detail, imaginative illustration and clarity. It gave me a feel of whether I wanted to visit a particular section of a wet market and a way to plan my route and purchases in advance.
Nancy must have spent hours painstakingly documenting, sizing, drawing. A single mistake puts you back on the drawing board, literally.
I am no illustrator and my scientific drawing days are well over but I’ve decided to draw a few of these maps for fun, as a guide for friends new to Hong Kong.
And a tribute to Nancy Chandler, for the inspiration.
Here’s my very first functional map of Tai Wong Street East in Old Wan Chai.
I realise the font is quite small. The map is high-ish resolution so you can expand it or print it out.
The thing about these types of maps is that there’s always more to say, so check back for updates.
Digging beneath the dirt… To find the good and the gritty