Sentinels of the Fire

I was worried that when I got the time to stop by Paradise Ridge Winery again, where the tasting room and wine making facility were burned in the Tubbs fire, that these tanks would be cleared away. Yet there they stood, silent sentinels before the charred trees, . If only they had voices to speak of what happened that fateful night last October.

sentinels1

fountain pen and watercolor in a grey toned Stilman + Birn 9 X 12″ sketchbook

Of course I took a bit of artistic liberty here to portray them as I saw them, like comrades at arms, standing together for solidarity during and after the firestorm. You can see the green of the meadows peaking through, and the miraculous return of foliage. The vineyard below has also leafed out, portending an excellent season of winemaking.

sentinels2

fountain pen and w/c in Field Watercolor Journal 7 X 10″

This sketch I did first on site recorded another aspect of the story. In the post-fire clean up efforts, the crushed grapes were emptied in a pile in the foreground, another colorful metaphor for the destruction. My sketch ended up looking too “clean”, which is why I opted next for the grey toned paper (above) I’ve been mostly using for sketches of the burn.

I hope to get back for more sketching at Paradise Ridge. They are busy working on a building to serve as a tasting room that may be open this summer. The grounds are so alluring, with sculptures still standing like eternal guardians.

To see my other sketches from Paradise Ridge see this post.

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