Ski Watercolor

Last Easter, I was skiing at Jay Peak, Vermont.   I was on top of the hill, just getting off the tramway, and I saw this ski patroller just below me.

I liked the composition:  he seemed to be standing in the right place at the right time, so I took the photo.

As you can see, there was no snow down in the valley below.   This was toward the end of the ski season.    But Jay Peak is a big enough mountain, that it tends to have it’s own weather system.  I remember that day alternating between warm sun, and freezing blustery snow squalls.  It was still quite wintery on top.

Anyway, today I decided to do something different, so I painted the ski hill.

As you can see, I deliberately put in the sky and left out the valley.   I did this so that the hill didn’t get lost in the dark background.  Plus it also helps emphasize the mountain itself.

Also,  the drawing is mostly white…which meant I had to leave a lot of the sheet blank. With winter scenes, the secret is knowing what NOT to paint.

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9 Comments on “Ski Watercolor”

  1. XUP Says:

    Very nice. It was considerate of the ski man to wear a bright red jacket to really set off the painting.

  2. Seestor Says:

    The photo has a “looking down” perspective and the painting has a “looking up” perspective. That’s all because of you changing the background to sky instead of valley.

    My favourite part are the little stunted trees in the foreground, with their cute little shadows. You captured that really well.

  3. Kyddryn Says:

    Lovely, Friar…

    Makes me miss New England.

    Shade and Sweetwater,

  4. Friar Says:

    Without the patroller in the red jacket…the whole painting would be “blah”.


    You make a good point.

    It was a weird perspective to capture. Because the mountain goes down, and goes slightly uphill again.


    I love New England. I try to go at least once a year, to get my dose of some decent mountains. To hold me over until I get to see the Rockies again.

  5. Wendi Kelly Says:

    Ah Friar,

    The secret of life. Knowing what to accentuate and what to ignore.

    How well you figured that out here. Now if it were only that easy in the rest of life huh?

  6. steph Says:

    That white info makes me appreciate your watercolours all the more.

  7. Friar Says:


    I might have figured it out here. Today. But that’s not necessarily always the case. Even after 20 years.

    Maybe I should write the a post about “Life is like a painting”. 😉

    Then again, there’s much less actual painting you have to do. So winter scenes are quick to pull off, if you can do it right.

  8. hannah78 Says:

    Great stuff! I like the little skier at the bottom!:)

  9. Friar Says:


    Yeah, I wouldn’t have bothered painting this, if it wasn’t for the skier.

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