Pastcards

Every month, a tasteful robot at Pastcards will pick a photo from your Instagram feed and send it to you on a surprise postcard.

Pastcards came from the collision of two ideas. The first started to percolate when I (@prehensile) moved home a few times in relatively quick succession and realised my collection of physical photos ended sometime in the early 2000s. I had boxes full of tangible memories from my earlier life, but hardly any from my early 20s onwards.

The second was a much simpler observation: it's nice to get nice things through the post. Especially when those nice things are a bit unexpected.

So I started to think: what if the photos that I take with my phone as ephemeral posts on a timeline could be made physical, like my boxes of photos? What if that could be done by a process that I didn‘t even have to think about? A photo could be picked every so often and sent to me as a surprise. I'd have regained that physical memory.

The end result of that thinking is Pastcards. It's a bit of an ongoing experiment; I've built enough of it to see if the idea works, and I think it's a nice enough thing to share with an audience.

I've roped in ARTOMATIC to do the honours with the printing — they're going to make sure the artefact that drops through our letterboxes is a lovely, keepable thing.

Let's see how this goes!

You can find more detailed information about the site in the Help Center and a more in-depth write-up about my motives and process for building Pastcards on Medium.