A number of Paine’s works were issued as post cards during the 1950’s. The original for ‘Jersey born and bred’ was in acrylic. The breakwater extending from left to right is a familiar Paine compositional device. Other examples include ‘Tramore Cove’ and ‘Geoffrey’s Leap’.
The scene is loosely based on St Catherine’s Breakwater, but the background coastline is misleading. France is 15 miles away, and the rocks in between, the Ecrehous reef, are seven miles off-shore. The lighthouse looks overlarge for the tiny metal tower that once stood there, long since replaced by something more modern.
The cow is recognizably a Jersey but with exaggerated features. The tradition was to peg a cow in a field to restrict grazing, as over-rich grass could cause problems. The animal shown is obviously young with tiny horns and so unlikely to have been pegged out.
One would not see waves rolling in as shown, except in violent storms, and whilst it is a popular place for sailing, there is no beach to run ashore on. The stylised farm buildings could be shown in pink granite, but that is not the rock used for the breakwater which is made of a grey conglomerate, quarried very locally. The rock-face on the left represents the cliff from which some of the stone was cut – and which remains alongside the road. Below it the rows of plants with sticks could be tomatoes which used to be cultivated outdoors – but not alongside this seashore.
The buildings do not exist as shown but are rather a symbolic representation of local architecture of the 19th century as in the arched entrance to the barn. The very strange chimney is meant to show jutting stones which were traditionally used on chimney stacks to stop rain getting in to a thatched roof. The technique continued with slates. The circular structure is a cider apple-crusher, the mill-stone pulled around by a horse, and the pulp transferred to a large press, weighed down with a heavy wooden beam, this second process taking place inside the building. We may imagine that the artist worked from photographs to create a composite of the various things shown, perhaps tinged with a rose-tinted memory.
(The foregoing description courtesy of the Jersey Historical Society)
Pencil studies for ‘Jersey born and bred’
This stylised Jersey cow is of unknown date and purpose. Possibly for an advertisement.
At least five of Paine’s watercolours were included in the post card series.
Gatehouse, Mont Orgueil Castle, Gorey
Queen Elizabeth Gate, Mont Orgueil Castle, Gorey
St. Mary’s Crypt, Mont Orgueil Castle, Gorey
Geoffrey’s Leap and St. Catherine’s Breakwater