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Snow art showcases beauty of winter

By: Katherine Butler on Jan. 3, 2013, 1:26 p.m.
geometric shape in snow

Photo: Courtesy of Simon Beck

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Hours of wintry work

One imagines it would take days to complete such complicated designs, like this one completed at Les Arcs, France. However, Beck says that each piece averages about 10 hours to “really do it properly,” though he will leave a design unfinished if his feet become too uncomfortable. Beck, who is an experienced orienteer, explains that the setting out of the design is initially done using a simple handheld orienteering compass. Next, he determines the appropriate distances on his designs by using pace counting or measuring tape. Curves are sometimes judged using a clothesline attached to an anchor at the center of the design. Then Beck adds in the remaining lines and shadings by eye.