Simon Beck creates incredible snow art

It all started with sore feet, says artist Simon Beck when asked how he ever launched his career as one of the leading snow artists in the world.

The Oxford-educated British mapmaker spends up to ten hours per day trudging though a ski resort in the French Alps to create elaborate patterns in the snow.

"The main reason for making them was because I can no longer run properly due to problems with my feet, so plodding about on level snow is the least painful way of getting exercise," Beck tells The Daily Mail.

"Gradually, the reason has become photographing them."

Once a design is complete, he takes an aerial view photograph of his snow art, which is said to resemble field crop circles.

Beck, who spends his winters at the ski resort, discovered his talent for making perfectly symmetrical patterns in the snow in 2004. He says he plots his detailed routes before walking them in snowshoes, and some of his designs equal the effort needed to climb halfway up Mont Blanc.

"I usually keep at it until I get too tired, using a headlamp if it gets dark first," he says. "It takes typically until I can't go on, but that can depend."

 -- by Shereen Dindar