In mountainous landscape a peasant woman is seen filling a bucket with water, while her male companion admires the view. To the right, another woman is by a small stone dwelling, which has smoke rising from its chimneys. There are further buildings in the distance and beyond them, a scenic lake.
The lake depicted in this view is Buttermere, a small lake located between the villages of Buttermere and Honister Pass, in the Lake District National Park. This print was made after a view painted by James Baker Pyne. It was first published as a lithograph by Thomas Agnew and Sons, Manchester, in 1853 as part of a set of prints titled ‘The English Lake District’. However, this work is from a second edition, lithographed by Thomas Picken (died 1870), and published by Day & Sons under the title ‘Lake Scenery of England’, in 1859.
Lithography is a method of printing using a stone surface and the principle that oil and water do not mix. The image is drawn onto a flat stone surface with a greasy substance, while areas to be kept free of ink are wetted. When the oily printing ink is applied, it is only attracted to dry, greased areas of stone.
Landscape painter James Baker Pyne was born in Bristol, where he worked as a self-taught artist until the age of 35. He gave painting lessons to William James Müller, who later became an artist of repute. In 1835 Pyne moved to London, exhibiting his work at the Royal Academy, British Institution and New Watercolour Society over two decades. In his early period he painted views and scenery around Bristol but after 1835 he travelled to Italy and elsewhere on the Continent, gathering material to work up into finished pictures. Pyne was an admirer and imitator of Turner; his dramatic effects and use of pale yellow tones reflecting Turner's influence. Today, his records of works produced from 1840 to 1868 are in the Victoria and Albert Museum.
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