As the rose goes

Stripes. Borders. Feathers of tightly-folded leaf unfurling. Wonderfully alien-looking serrated scrolls presenting new stems. Colour so vivid I have to start with highlighter. Never mind the chill wind – the roses are going for it.

It takes a lot of colour (and a lot of looking) to show this new growth. Each leaf has veins of fresh green; the blue-green leaves have a wash of purple; the pink leaves, undertones of orange, echo the green; startlingly-bright buds glow fluoro from subtle mauve-green branches. I even bring into service a red biro, traditionally for sharp-eyed edits, here, for sharp red leaf edges.

One fly, the first I've sketched this year, sits patiently on a leaf, bronze eyes, engineered body, lace wings – steampunk wildlife.

Marvels, all and worth the dashes indoors to defrost between sketches.

Ballpen, watercolour, fineliner and highlighter on handed-down paper.

Visit my Teemill shop for sketches on t-shirts and tote bags.