A good year for jasmine

Normally, I pay it attention only to give its tangled limbs somewhere to go. But this year, the jasmine is in flower. And today, it rewards my stillness with glorious wafts of scent, echoes of perfumes gone by. Drawing, I notice that its flowers have just four almost-oblong petals, curled into scrolls as they go over. This sketch is as much about the dark as the light, the ivy, which I show only by colour, a foil for the flowers and their tightly-rolled buds.

The cool a relief after heat of the sort of that we yearn for in Britain but when it arrives, we can’t quite cope with, I decide to follow with two more sketches honouring my garden’s shady flowers.

The camomile is a present from the birds. On their own, they’re ordinary little flowers but together, they glow under the holly tree. So I reach for a watercolour pastel to get the soft, chalky brightness of their centres.

For most of the year, the hebe is all modest leaves, now, with competition from the considerably more ambitious lonicera. But this year, it’s in abundant flower, like miniature buddleia, its mauves vivid to blue-ish to pale pastel, each flower head different in structure and hue.

With so much show in the garden it’s easy to overlook the quiet beauty in its nooks and corners. So I’m thankful for the light on this strange, cloudy, sunny, drizzly Sunday that’s drawn me in to draw.

Ballpen, watercolour, fineliner and watercolour pastel 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.