Artist captures campus in watercolor

Josh Holz

A local painter has given UVM’s snowy campus some color. Peter Huntoon painted UVM in watercolors as a part of his “A Day in Vermont” project.

“What pops out to me is the green in the trees,” senior Kelly Ramos said, commenting on the painting. “I like the contrast a lot.”

“I think he’s getting the essence of UVM’s campus,” said senior Anna Hill. “It represents a local art scene.”

The project lets him share Vermont’s beauty with a wider audience, Huntoon said. “You need a fresh breath of Vermont air to remember you live in a beautiful place,” he said. “It lets me share that experience.”

Huntoon said he gets to share that experience of Vermont every week, painting different locations. He said he has wanted to paint UVM for a long time. “I love architecture and Vermont, so it was a no brainer,” he said.

In his twenties, Huntoon began painting at watercolor workshops in Rutland, Vermont. Painting has allowed him to work with color at an emotional level, he said.

“Color hits you in the heart first and the head second,” Huntoon said.


Being in the right mood allows you to paint sincerely, and Huntoon said he loved the energetic mood he got from UVM students. “I got a sense of optimism from the students,” Huntoon said. “I feed off of that.” He said he uses that same optimism when painting. “I paint best when I’m happy,” Huntoon said.

He said he loves painting with watercolor for its spontaneous quality. “I’ll start with a big splotch of color on the canvas,” he said. “You invite chaos, and then impose order when you’re painting.”

Ten-thousand hours of painting has helped shape this process, he said. He paints in his studio in Middletown, Vermont and continues to work locally. He shares his paintings of Vermont every Monday on his website,