let it (spraypaint on) snow…

by Grace Bonney

i love when i see something that makes me grin and think, “oh man, why didn’t i ever think to try that before?” so when i heard from graphic designer jennifer in new jersey about her snow painting project i was all smiles. jennifer explained that during the last snow storm she and her sister made a bet on whether or not you could spray paint on snow. so jennifer created a little “let it snow” design, printed it and then cut out the letters on a piece of 11×17 paper. after a little spraypaint she created the fun design above. needless to say she won the bet.

this is such a clever idea, i’d love to see it used in a really large scale. i can only imagine how cool this would look from above if you did a super-scale version in a field. this would be a great technique to use for outdoor events or even an outdoor wedding that got a little snowy. thanks so much to jennifer for sharing!

*update: if you want a more environmentally friendly version of this idea, try making your own vegetable dyes and using them in a spray bottle to get the same effect.


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  • I had no idea people would get so angry about expressing some concern for our environment.

    I think it stemmed from the way you and others did it, Emma. Nobody likes being scolded, especially by a self-appointed spokeswoman for Mother Earth who seems to be assuming that the rest of us don’t care about nature.

    Perhaps instead of leaping to berate Jennifer over what you must admit is an infinitesimal eco-sin, it would have been more encouraging to write, “Hey, what a clever idea! And to make it more environmentally friendly, use a water and vegetable dye spray!”

  • Really? Refusing to be condescending to someone who didn’t realize the environmental implications of their actions is not caring about pollution? You seem to be conflating rudeness with passion. So none of you righteous souls eat meat or animal byproducts, right? None of you own more than a couple (to be generous) of each article of clothing? None of you ever buy new furniture, appliances, artwork, books, shoes? None of you own computers or televisions? None of you use electricity? None of you buy anything that comes in plastic packaging? Right? The list goes on forever. No one who lives in the Western World is flawless when it comes to environmental impact. You could always do better than you’re doing, use less resources, and there will always be a vast number of things that you do which some pompous vegan nudist who lives off the grid could chew you out for. The difference is that some of us also care about not polluting the world with unkindness as much as we care about not polluting the world with chemicals.

  • e, you make a great point and i respect it. it hurts to be brushed into a big pile of “you” and “they” though. just because i’ve tried to make big changes in my life like recycling, not driving a car, cutting down on meat, having parents who got into organic farming (they aren’t hippies btw, far from it), etc. whatever, it doesn’t mean i’m some “vegan nudist who lives off the grid.” I’m none of those things actually and I don’t think anyone else said they were either. You seem like a much too intelligent and caring person to be making sweeping generalizations and perhaps we’d all understand eachother a bit more if insults weren’t being thrown about. Just a thought, I really am not trying to preach, just hoping for a peaceful meeting of the minds on what i think is a really fabulous blog.

  • Kate, my second comment was in direct response to this statement: “Well, I guess I’m seeing two general camps: those who really care about pollution, and those who don’t. Blandwagon, you’re obviously in the second camp.” I should have addressed the person/statement I was responding to so my mistake for being unclear.

    My mention of “vegan nudists living off the grid” was not an insult (I find at least two out of three of those traits pretty admirable, actually). I also wasn’t claiming that anyone here is one of those things. My point was actually that no one here is, that there is always someone doing it better than you (and me). I’m not religious, but the parable about those without sin casting the first stone sums it up better than I did, apparently. My intended point was the exact opposite of a sweeping generalization–an acceptance of the fact that like everything else in life there is a very broad spectrum, and rather than being self-righteous we should reflect on our imperfections before rushing to put someone down for theirs. And we should accept that just like us, everyone else is just trying to get by and be the best they can, which is a never-ending process.

    In response to you, I reread your comment about the danger of those chemicals and your perception of the necessary evil of driving a car. None of the facts you stated were untrue and it’s very admirable of you to make any efforts to have less of an impact on the environment. I don’t eat meat. I could list facts about the environmental impacts of eating meat and make you feel guilty for eating any. And you’d probably say much of what you’ve said already, that you do a lot of things to benefit the environment, and hope to do more, and you might feel like who am I to judge you for one thing you do imperfectly when you do so many others right? You’ve drawn a line for yourself dictating what is acceptable in your life (driving a car sometimes, eating some meat) and what is not (spray painting snow). But why do you have any more authority than someone who draws a different line, like someone who thinks that eating meat is unacceptable or someone who, for all you know doesn’t eat meat, but spray painted snow once? It’s not about what was said, but how. It’s not a competition. We all want the same thing. And yes, it is a fabulous blog. I’m sorry if I came off too antagonistic. I just get really heated when people turn something so good and important into some sort of club.

  • Kate, to clarify further, I’m not accusing you of being one of the ones turning it into a club or a competition. Proverbial and personal yous are hard to differentiate in text. “It’s not about what was said, but how” is referring to the original comment I responded to, and others, not yours to me.

  • anyone see the irony of making a sign that says “let it snow” after it has already snowed? it’s like the folks who put the word “sleep” over their beds. do you really need the reminder?

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