I am not a fan of Ximending, but I couldn't resist my latest urge to draw a sketch of the square near the exit of Ximen MRT station. The colorful billboards there always remind me of Times Square in New York City.
Knowing that I would have to put up with the crowds, I set out for the hotspot of teen subculture. Still, I felt ill at ease because I hardly felt so hesitant after having taken a long look at a place. Since I wanted to draw the aging veterans that hang out here and the trendy adolescents, I gave up the Red House. Here, historical buildings don't compare to the river-like crowds because the latter are what makes Ximending unique.
The shape of a sketchbook plays a key role in the formation of an image. My new Rhodia sketchbook is rectangular, so I couldn't help but cut the square into halves. I started by drawing people in the foreground, then I moved on to the second layer of people, the third and the fourth. Most of them were waiting and talking on the cell. In front of me walked by several limp old men. It was funny that though the square was packed with people, no one came to talk to me. Even though the old man sitting next to me leaned sideways to look at my drawing from time to time, he didn't say a word. Before he left, he turned to look at me in the eye, in silence. My image was almost full, but this is the most lonely place I have ever drawn.
Usually I can't help coloring a sketch at home for I derive much pleasure from doing it. Yet I can't figure out the color schemes of Ximending since there are too many. And like Caterina said, white is the color when you combine all colors, so maybe black and white are for the place.