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Lynne Roebuck (Handwritten)
A track leads across the moor toward Bumper Hagg in the distance

Bilsdale, Yorkshire:‘Toward Bumper Hagg’

This painting was completed at the head of Bilsdale, part of the North York Moors. Just up from Hawnby, where the lush wooded valley, or dale, rises to meet the heathland.

After several miles of narrow roads enclosed by dry stone walls, the moorland characteristic of this part of Yorkshire suddenly opens out.

Bilsdale is on the Western edge of The North York Moors. Typical sheep farming terrain, with narrow lanes consisting of steep climbs up and decents down. It's an area popular with cyclists, as well as walkers.

The dale ends here at Bumper Hagg. Hagg, I believe means wooded slopes, which it must have been in the past – the remains visible below the rocky outcrops.

This original landscape art was painted in the sweltering heat of one of the hottest of hot days of the summer. Most of the sheep had retreated to the little shade they could find.

original plein‑air painting

  • Artwork Size: 25.4 x 30.5 cm (10 x 12 ins)
  • Medium: oil
  • Ground: canvas panel
  • Frame: yes - available without it

Only the three silly sheep you can see on the track, beyond the small wooden structure, were marching around in it. They were nearly as daft as me, sitting there getting baked.

The light was incredible, the colours delightful, with the heather just beginning to bloom. It contrasted with the enticing green oasis of the head end of Bilsdale in the distance. Perhaps that's where the animals were headed.

Painting En Plein‑air is often challenging. It's not just bad weather, but good weather too.

In hot weather, your paints dry on the palette before they've got onto the canvas for example! Painting outside is strangely addictive, though. Perhaps I'm just madder than the sheep.