Whether one uses the word rude in the archaic sense of primitive, simple, unsophisticated, in natural state rugged, unimproved, uncivilised, uneducated, roughly made, coarse, artless, or wanting subtlety - or whether one does not - it is still an undisputed fact that as a means of producing Rude Postcards, the art of photography is on the up. That being so I propose to give a few hints to the beginner to enable him (or her - Ed.), to avoid the usual pitfalls. Firstly, as in painting, it is not a good thing to model one's rudeness too much on the French School . . . there is a delicate je ne sais quoi about the Gallic approach that drives the Sturdy British Public right into any odd corner when confronted with a pictorial sample. This sort of solitary ecstasy is against all the principles of ethics and mass production, and is of dubious educational value. The same general criticism applies to the German, Flemish, Italian, Middle-Eastern and Far-Eastern Schools.

No, the only legitimate approach to the problem is to delve right down into the sub-conscious, if necessary until it hurts, until an idea is born; for in Rude Postcards the idea is the thing, technique is an altogether secondary consideration. Fortunately it is only necessary to do this once. Armed with the right kind of idea the veriest tyro can produce dozens of saleable variations, which, in conjunction with interchangeable captions, can be magnified by permutation and combination into thousands.

Rude Postcards UncleAlbertsManualOfPracticalPhotography 78

Take the simple idea expressed by the accompanying series: Whilst quietly philosophising in the coal-hole a student has his (or her - Ed.) thoughts and vista of the outside world rudely interrupted by a foreign body. Note that expression rudely; it is the operative sentiment and conditions the whole idea, although it is the precise nature of the interrupting body that provides the delicate nuances of the variations. Actually the body need not be foreign, although I have usually found that the situation has an added piquancy if it is. Naturally, there are other approaches to the problem, but I can only say that my best Rude-Postcard work has been produced in strict accordance with the above method (Miss Kellard may know others - Ed.)

Rude Postcards UncleAlbertsManualOfPracticalPhotography 79