September. After the dry, hot Summer, some of my plants are only just catching up and some are surprises, presents from the birds.
I had given up on the chilli. Its sibling had gone to local friends who are good at coaxing them into abundance indoors. Mine had been nibbled at early in the season but spotting a flower, as I perched to draw it I noticed a chilli, then another, then another... Each will be honoured in the kitchen.
Still green, the tomatoes hang elegantly in a bunch of assorted sizes, light and faded fence making their hairy stems and leaves glow. I love that tomato stems have knuckles, built for the job of holding heavy fruit. The unripe green is more complex than it looks at first – there are layers here of its hues and the palest hint of yellow, which may yet turn to ripeness in early Autumn sun.
And there's black nightshade – a visitor in one of the pots this year. Its berries are not for humans but they're wonderfully fashiony things, matt black with tops like Mary Quant flowers. Line so many black things in nature, that rich, beautiful colour is complex, here, purple and Payne's Gray, a deep blue-grey that lifts colours as it darkens them.
This week I'm drawing on chunky, textured paper that asks for a painterly approach to drawing. It's freeing – and very forgiving of my hard-worked brushes.
Ballpen, watercolour and fineliner on handed-down watercolour paper.
Rose sketches from this project are available as greeting cards, from the Garden Museum shop in London and at Hackney Wick Underground.
On my Teemill shop, watercolour and line sketches on t-shirts and tote bags.