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Donald McGill: king of saucy seaside postcards


The Encyclopædia Britannica blog salutes Donald McGill – king of Britain’s saucy postcards from the olden days era. (Do click through and look at the examples.)

McGill designed and produced over 12,000 seaside themed postcards between 1904 and 1962. His designs were once very well known—and postcard holders across the UK often displayed McGills cheeky and cheerful cards. They often featured a comically rotund woman or man, blissfully unaware of the impact of their actions, trailed by a tiny spouse, who is thwarted in their attempts to live life to the full. His cards depict discussions between husbands and wife, brides to be’s, worried mothers and vicars and the subjects range from drinking, matrimony, religion, parenthood, and married life to name a few.

Way back in 1966, Hutchinson published a collection of McGill’s work in a book called The Art of Donald McGill. Surely, it’s time to revisit this man’s work again?

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Richard Davies

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