Pens and skis are his tools, while the mountains are his inspiration. Simon Charrière has been drawing since he was a small boy – and has been skiing for just as long. Today, his lines can be found on walls all over the world – and on the powder-covered slopes of the Fribourg Alps.
Photographers want to capture Simon on film as a freerider in projects across the globe.
He learned to ski at the age of three, going on to take up ski touring at the age of 13. “All of a sudden, it just clicked. We searched the mountains for deep-snow slopes and skied some really tough couloirs,” recalls Simon. Sponsors were soon focusing their attention on the Fribourg native.
His downhill line looks like a signature in the snow.
Simon is forever seeking the perfect line. Across the globe, in the nearby Valais Alps – and over and over again at home in the Fribourg Alps, such as on the Moléson. As the snow flies up, a whoop of joy echoes off the rock faces. He is swallowed up by the fog further down below, and all that’s left behind are three gigantic arcs in the snow.
His laugh, his skiing style and his passion more than make up for any competition results.
“The Freeride Championships weren’t really my thing. I preferred travelling with my friends through the Alps,” Simon admits, laughing impishly.
Out into the wide world from Fribourg – and forever returning.
Fribourg, Valais, Europe’s Alpine countries, Norway, Japan: sponsors invited Simon to embark on ski adventures across the globe. Although the world was at his feet, he always came home. “That’s how we are in Fribourg: we travel a lot but are always homesick,” laughs Simon.
The mountains and skiing are the inspiration for his drawings.
From a young age, Simon was never without a pencil and paper, scribbling over every blank space. His talent for drawing led him to architecture. “But a few years later, all I wanted to do was draw free-hand – and freeride.”
“It was my dream to live from skiing and drawing – which is precisely what I’m doing today.”
Simon has been living out his dream for five years. Does he have any other aspirations? “Hmmm, my own book would be cool.” Who knows: a publisher has already contacted him.
“But, know what? I’m going to first of all ski this couloir and then we’ll eat a fondue in the restaurant at the summit.”
Simon’s eyes light up. He puts his pens into his jacket pocket – ready for the next lines. On paper. In the snow. The dream lives on.
Fribourg natives extol the virtues of the Moléson, claiming it to be the most beautiful mountain in Switzerland. It looms majestically at the entrance to the Alps, with views stretching out to infinity. It is just 30 minutes from the city of Fribourg. Don’t miss out on: a moitié-moitié (half Gruyère AOP, half Vacherin fribourgeois AOP) fondue in Le Sommet restaurant on its summit, sightseeing in the nearby town of Gruyères, or a visit to the show dairy La Maison du Gruyère