The British seaside comic postcard, with its own brand of risqué humour was immensely popular. Many designs were adapted for each resort by simply overprinting them with words of greeting from the resort in question.
After 1918, the seaside, postcard market was dominated by Donald McGill.He reputedly designed more than 3000 different cards, the more popular ones selling more than 1,000,000 copies. Little wonder that he was nicknamed the 'Leonardo' of the saucy postcard!
Another famous designer of these cards was Tom Browne, who initially made his name as a cartoonist for Punch magazine.
The signatures of these designers are easily recognisable. Donald McGill always signed his name in full, marking it with three dots - one before his christian name, one between his christian name and surname and one after his surname. Tom Browne signed simply as 'Tom B.' with a full stop shown after the 'B'.
Davidson Bros. and Tucks were two of the very earliest publishers to showcase comedic artists. By the list of artists they used, it seems that they had the pick of the London Sketch Club. Comic postcards signed by the likes of Phil May, Tom Browne, Will Owen and Harry Rountree,are all desirable and priced accordingly.
born at Cartworth, Yorkshire in 1841 or 1842.
Holmfirth was the birthplace of Bamforth & Co Ltd and the saucy seaside postcard. The beginnings date back to 1860’s when a family of painters and decorators started to supply painted backgrounds for laternslide shows and subsequently the lanternslides themselves. After 1902, James Bamforth, increasingly supported by his sons, concentrated his efforts on postcard production. At the turn of the century the picture postcard started to become popular and during the first world war sentemental and song based cards were produced by Edwin Bamforth.
Popular holiday resort views were core products until artists Douglas Tempest (the first of the artists who started in 1912), and Arnold Taylor, Philip Taylor and Brian Fitzpatrick made it easier to maintain a distinctive house style with bright colours and exaggerated characters introducing the comic cards we now associate with Bamforth’s.
Sadly the company bought by E W Dennis of Scarborough in 1987 stopped production with the closure of Dennis’s.