Charles Johnson Payne “Snaffles” ~ Warwickshire England


... equestrian print by the British artist Charles “Snaffles” Johnson


~Charles Johnson Payne “Snaffles”~

Born:  January 17 th 1884-1967

Location: Warwickshire England

Old Tawney

Charles Jonson Payne was forth of a boot maker’s eight children. Before becoming a famous artist, Payne tried to enlist in the army to fight in the Boer war, but was rejected on the grounds that he was too young. Eventually, he joined the Royal Garrison Artillery at the age of 18 as a gunner but in 1906 he was forced to leave because of illness. His time in the army must have been an influence, since his first recorded semi-caricature portraits date from this time.

Invalided out of World War One, Payne took a job as a war artist for The Graphic and it was during these years that he produced some of his finest military work. After the war his work became more varied, although he still often contributed to The Sporting & Dramatic News. In 1912, Payne moved to Oakham, Rutland .


It was as a sporting artist that “Snaffles” built his reputation and, after the War, he worked on the hunting, shooting, polo, racing and fishing subjects which made his name. The classic series of pig-sticking prints he completed in India in the 1920s are perhaps the images for which he is best known and his depictions of military life in the Raj are second to none.

Honest Hunters

Snaffles built an element of humor into his work and the captions to his subjects were often as important as the artwork. Payne’s work was published in limited edition prints for nearly half a century, the early prints published in back and white and hand colored, the later were photographic color prints. Most all have a humorous inscription and are signed in pencil. A large number have print borders bearing an impressed mark of two interlocking snaffle bits. The prints almost always have a sentimental nostalgic theme. Manny of his original prints are now being reproduced again, as he carries his universal appeal into the 21 st century.

Blood and Quality


Cut-em Down Captain
The Hunts Man


Preshwater Vale,
Forrard on me lads and hit ’em
Once Upon A Time
Smokin’ My Pipe On The Mountings
Carpet Beaters v Bobbery Wallahs
Tally-Ho Back
An Irish Yawner.’, ‘The Stake and Bound.’ and ‘The Stone Wall
The Grand National
An Irish point to point


A Fire Eater , ca. 1919
High Leicestershire


That far, far-away Echo
Sport in the Shiney

I hope you enjoyed seeing “Snaffles” unique paintings . I haven’t seen many like his!


Huh? What? Well, I will believe that when I see flying Shetlands !




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