Proper Bristol - Postcard Competition

No more Bridge. Easy on the Balloons…

Those pictures of the Suspension Bridge, hot air Balloons and Harbourside.
Those statues of slavers, soldiers and politicians, those demonstrations of wealth and power seep into our very marrow.
Those corporate billboards continue to pollute our view, spilling out their tempting sordid lies.
Like fish we do not notice the water we swim in.

The imagery that a City chooses to portray itself is of the utmost importance.
Those images  define the soul of the place and the aspirations of its people.

We call on the Bristol public to help us create a new series of postcards depicting the best and worst of our fair city.

The spirit of the city resides in its people and its culture, much of which comes from the everyday, from the streets, from the backstreet music venues, from the walls of the city. Much of the energy that drives this city comes from below, from those who are unheard, who struggle for voice.

The people of Bristol have always been a difficult mutinous lot. The Peoples Republic of Stokes Croft (PRSC) propose a rethink. This city of street art, pirates, guerrilla gardening and St Paul’s Carnival is richer and more complex than the old set of clichés on offer.

 So, what images truly represent the city?

And who should get to decide how Bristol is represented?

Images may be non-narrative, representing buildings and scenes just as they are; they can offer social commentary, street photos or protest; or they can celebrate the people of Bristol in all our colourful glory.

A new story is vital to the process of social change
A new aesthetic is an essential component of that change 

Change is afoot. Bristol, if it chooses, is well placed to be at the centre of real change.

If you would like to submit an image, email it alongside your name, age, image title and up to 50 words about your picture.

A postcard produced by PRSC in 2008

We are delighted to reveal the judging panel for the Proper Bristol Postcard Competition:

  • Will Self – Journalist, author and supporter of Bristol rehab charity Chandos House

  • Claire Doherty – Director of the Arnolfini, Claire champions new approaches to arts in the public realm, focusing on engagement and access.

  • Michael Jenkins – Film maker and director of 8th Sense Media, Michael believes passionately in the role of art as an engine for change & understanding.

  • Rama Azkoul – Drawing and print student at UWE, Rama considers people to be the heart of Bristol, and believes that art can change the world.

  • Colin Moody – Bristol street photographer, Colin seeks out humanity, humour and poignancy in the everyday scenes that pass most of us by.

  • Chris Chalkley – Founder and director of PRSC, Chris is a lifelong campaigner for the arts as a tool to give voice to the voiceless in Bristol.

The Dates

  • Oct 31 competition deadline
  • Nov 1-14 Judging
  • Dec 1 Finalists announced and public ballot opens
  • Dec 7-17 Public exhibition of all the entries at PRSC
  • Dec 21 Close of ballot
  • Jan 7 Winners Announced
  • Jan 10 Award Cermony

The Juice

  • Please consider the postcard format when submitting work. Landscape or portrait format are both acceptable.
  • Text captions, montages and manipulated images are all welcome. They can be offering hope or be witty or strike at an issue of importance, but they must be relevant to this city.
  • The final result will be a 16 image postcard series that tells the story of what Bristol is about and where it is heading. This postcard series will be produced and distributed by PRSC.
  • The 16 finalists (including the under 18 winner) will be chosen by our wonderful panel of judges.The overall winners and runners up will be chosen by public vote.
  • All submitted images will be exhibited in a public exhibition in December 2018.
  • There is also the possibility that a book will be produced later in the year presenting the collated submissions.


  • All 16 finalists will be included in the Proper Bristol postcard series and will each receive 200 copies of their own images as postcards.
  • There will be one over 18 first prize, and one under 18 first prize of £250 cash.
  • There will be 3 runner-up prizes of £100 cash.
  • Each of the remaining 11 finalists will receive a £75 voucher from Stokes Croft China.


  • The competition is free to enter and open to everyone.
  • Send your entries to:
  • Please include up to 50 words describing your postcard.
  • We have an under 18s category, so if you are under 18, tell us your age in your submission email.
  • No more than 5 entries per person please!
  • Deadline for submissions is Midnight on October 31st
  • Images to be submitted as Jpegs only & must be high enough quality to produce an A3 sized print.
  • Entry of this competition entitles PRSC to reproduce the submitted image in exhibition and publicity materials.
  • The 16 winning entries will be available to PRSC to reproduce and sell as postcards and posters.

By entering this competition, I understand that if my image is one of the 16 winning entries, I am giving PRSC the permission to reproduce the image, fully, partially or with alterations, for commercial and for non-commercial use.

Stokes Croft portrait by Claudio Ahlers for the 24H OUR CITY project

Easton postcard from Colin Moody

This Project has been generously supported by Journey to Justice Bristol