When Simon Beck stomps through fields of fresh snow, art happens.
In his first trip to North America, the British snow artist was invited by Banff Lake Louise Tourism to create a series of large-scale designs in snow. Beck has been making snowflakes, leaves and geometric designs with his snowshoes for the past decade, mostly in the Alps.
In late February, he stomped out a huge snowflake at Peyto Lake in the Canadian Rockies that took more than six hours and measured 1,476 feet from tip to tip, according to a statement. As an added touch, the outline was illuminated by LED lights.
"We were all excited to see what amazing drawings Simon could create, with Banff National Park as the backdrop, and we were more than impressed," Kymberley Hill of the tourism agency says via email. "His work was spectacular and to see it framed by our natural alpine landscape of mountain peaks was incredible."
(Check out a time-lapse video below made of Beck creating his masterpieces in Canada.)
George Webber followed Beck on his foray into Canada. He writes on the Canadian Toque & Canoe blog:
"The day-to-day world is probably a tight fit for Simon. The wider world fits him comfortably. His foot doesn’t fit in a brogue but rather here, in his red snowshoes on the fresh, soft-blown snow of Peyto Lake in Banff National Park."
Days later, Beck with the help of volunteers created an intricate art design at Summit Powder Mountain in Eden, Utah.
Beck, in his mid 50s, holds an engineering degree from Oxford University and became a "freelance orienteering mapmaker," the Guardian reports. He makes careful drawings and refers to his sketches while reproducing them in snow fields with his snowshoes.
You'll find more of his work -- he creates about 30 a year -- in his 2014 book called "Simon Beck: Snow Art."
And here's an interview with Beck on the Mental Floss blog about how he creates his artwork.