How to make the world’s biggest postcard

What would you do with an unwanted painting? It’s not a question that you come across that often. Unless you’re living an especially decadent lifestyle. In fact, just posing the question reminds me of a shameful moment at university, where the morning after a dinner party the call went up: ‘The sink’s blocked with caviar again.’

Cheap caviar

Turns out you can buy caviar for £1.49 from Lidl.

I got one of those canvas printing deals off Living Social – ‘95% off, get them before we go bust’ kind of things – and asked for a print of this lovely photo I took of Eilean Donan Castle in Kyle of Lochalsh in the wild west of Scotland.

Eilean Donan Castle

Isn’t that lovely? I never take good pictures, so this was something of a triumph.

Anyway, after some considerable delay on their part – you know how long it takes to get replacement toner – they finally sent this through.

Printing with error

Either a very distant meteor strike, or a small section of that rare meteorological event the ‘sickbow’.

Clearly this was inadequate, so I sent for another one, which the printing company provided with a graceful apology. But what to do with the broken one? I lack the artistic talent or wherewithal to turn it to something clever by painting over it. But then a brainwave – what we have here is a cheesy, touristy photo. Where do cheesy, touristy photos usually go? Postcards!

Biggest postcard ever

First, cut your canvas print off the wooden frame. It makes it easier to post. Resist the urge to use large, wafty painting as amusing blanket substitute (paintings have a very low tog rating)

Biggest postcard ever

Next, write your postcard message on the back. Use a felt tip. Remember, as with all postcard messages, the intention must be to demonstrate you’re having a better time than the receiver without overtly bragging about it. As you can see, this part of the operation involves the most thinking, and therefore tea is essential.

Wrapping the biggest postcard in the world

Next wrap up your postcard. You could give the Post Office a large quantity of money for a proper packing tube. Or you could do what I did, which is to use a Pringles tin. This cost a third of the price, and makes your painting taste significantly more delicious. Remember to remove Pringles before inserting painting.

The final question was deciding who we should send the postcard to. It felt essential that to be qualified a real postcard it should travel a long way, preferably overseas. And to be particularly good, it should excite the interest of particularly irksome customs officials. What I’m saying is, it had to go to America. (I believe it only snuck past the gum-chewin’, gun-totin’ good ol’ boys at LAX airport in the end because of the government shutdown.)

Luckily we knew some particularly wonderful Americans who are tolerant of whimsy.  And here’s the postcard in it’s new home!

Jakub gets the world's biggest postcard

There are two things I love about this picture – the amount of fridge space our postcard monopolises (in the true spirit of the British Empire), and the fact it looks like we’ve covered the  art work of more talented people. In your face genuine talent.

Finally, a truly great life hack. I urge you to send all of your unwanted paintings as postcards. It could be the next big thing.

For more of this kind of rubbish, you can follow Land of Dope and Tories on Twitter @MrGlazed

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