PHOTOS: Man creates incredible snow art with a compass and snowshoes

Simon Beck is an artist, but he doesn’t use a paintbrush or pencil to create his work. Instead, a blanket of snow is his canvas: He trudges around and around in a pair of snowshoes until he creates a beautiful, massive design.

Beck, who is British, is an orienteering mapmaker and created his first work of art in 2004, according to his Facebook. He first created a five-pointed star with circles between the points. When that was covered by a new snowfall, he created a 10-pointed star instead and embarked on a new hobby.

Beck said each snow drawing takes about 10 hours. He draws them ahead of time on a piece of paper as an outline, then takes his compass and snowshoes and embarks on his next masterpiece. The drawings are no easy feat. Beck wrote on his page, “The hardest past is avoiding a ‘stupid’ mistake, and the most frequent cause of those is a wrong aiming point (straight lines are made by aiming at a point in the distance but one can easily accidentally aim at the wrong point).

“The most painful part is getting changed into warmer clothes as the temperature drops, as this often means removing clothing that has got damp, and you get VERY cold in the process.”

Of course, Beck said his hobby is very rewarding. He said the coolest part is when he wraps up his drawing at night and a snowcat machine passes by, lighting up the new piece. Beck said he does most of his pieces in Savoie, France, where he lives during the ski season.

Follow Andrea Park on Twitter: @andreapark


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