Between 1819 to 1826 Constable rented a house at Hampstead nearly every summer and made many oil sketches of the surrounding landscape and skies. In 1827 he moved there permanently. Constable was fascinated with the broken textures of the heath, and made a number of studies of it seen from close to. Some of these are quite highly finished, like this example. A glimpse of more distant landscape to the right acts as a counterbalance, while the tiny figures on the horizon help establish the scale.