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Tacky Tourist Photos

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Oct '09

The Ugandan Tourist Trap: Milking the Equator for all it’s worth

Were you expected to be greeted with a statue of Idi Amin?

Were you expecting to be greeted with a statue of Idi Amin?

SUBMITTED BY: Brian Henderson LOCATION: Uganda (2006)

Photojournalist Brian Henderson was in the region “raising awareness,” as he puts it, for the Batwa Pygmies.

But he also found time to raise awareness about the Equator, the often-celebrated-but-misunderstood imaginary line at zero degrees latitude.

We’re just thrilled that we can now fill in Uganda on our World Domination Map!

(Brian Henderson has also gobbled up San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge).

Feb '16

What’s the Difference Between a Male and a Female Pineapple?

Silly photo-ops at the Helemano Pineapple Plantation in Hawaii

SUBMITTED BY: Brian Henderson and Nancy Wong    LOCATION: Helemano Plantation, Hawaii (2016)

We are NOT by any means experts in fruit anatomy. But modesty aside, we can’t figure out why the pineapple on the right needs to wear a bra.

Here’s another hole-in-the-head photo-op at the wonderfully kitschy Helemano Plantation:

Must be difficult to adjust the shutter speed with those nails!

(Photojournalist Brian Henderson is one of the most prolific contributors to Tacky Tourist Photos, previously sharing gems from the South of the Border rest stop on I-95, Uganda’s Imaginary Equator Line, and the absolutely scrumptious Golden Gate Bridge.)

Jan '13

Ice Cream Hugger

South of the Border's Pedro wants you to indulge your lust for lactose!

SUBMITTED BY: Brian Henderson and Anne Donelan   LOCATION: I-95, Dillon, South Carolina

Anyone who has ventured on a Florida roadtrip from any East Coast destination can attest to the marketing power of the South of the Border truck stop, a.k.a. “America’s Favorite Highway Oasis.”

It’s relentless Beat Down Marketing, pummeling you with billboard updates every mile a la the “100 Bottles of Beer” song. You’re now 39 miles away… You’re now 38 miles away… 37, 36, 35.

When the attack on your senses finally stops, who wouldn’t want to hug the nearest ice cream?

(Freelance photojournalist and cameraman Brian Henderson is a prolific contributor to Tacky Tourist Photos, filing dispatches spanning from San Francisco’s scrumptious Golden Gate Bridge to Uganda’s magical Equator line).

Oct '12

Equator Ecstasy

What's more surprising, this tourist sign in the middle of nowhere or that they quote Disney's "The Lion King" in Kenya?

SUBMITTED BY: Michael Wasserman  LOCATION: Somewhere on the Zero-Degree Latitude Line, Kenya (2010)

This tourist sign looks like a junior high school geography mural, but it was a welcome sight for recreational jumper and travel blogger Michael Wasserman.

Obsessed with imaginary lines, Michael later visited another Equator photo-op in nearby Uganda, a site crawling with other Tacky Tourist Photo correspondents.

(Travel writer Michael Wasserman is a Brooklyn (NY) school teacher who’s traveled to 50 countries on six continents. He loves to photograph ridiculous street signs and confesses a personal weakness for foreign hats.)

Dec '11

“Tacky Tourist Photos LIVE!” delights the critics

Snapping the Mommy Lisa: Librarian Noelle Boc shares an artistic moment with her daughter Isabelle at Tewksbury Tacky Tourist Photos Night.

If the hushed chatter in the hallowed halls of Tewksbury Public Library is any indication, it looks like “Tacky Tourist Photos Live” is a bona fide smash sensation!

If you happen to live within 300 miles of the Greater Tewksbury area, load your family up in the station wagon for a photography exhibition that will create lasting memories for a lifetime!

As the Lowell Sun eloquently puts it, “secret admirers of roadside kitsch, wacky road signs, and offbeat travel photo ops will revel in the newest exhibit” at the TPL!”

Don’t think that the show is worth all those exclamation points?  Think again!!!

What if Leonardo Da Vinci had more canvas?

Library visitors can pose as the Mona Lisa for the month of December without the laborious effort of visiting the Louvre and all the annoying crowds that it entails. Pretty eerie how perfectly the outfits above match, huh? It’s almost as if the Tacky Tourist Photos exhibition was sponsored by “Project Runway.”

Hair's to You, Mona -- Lining up the hair parts isn't always easy.

The Katie Lisa is really a blonde with dark roots.

Aside from the fun-spirited photo sessions and potentially award-winning presentation, many believe that the highlight of the evening was a candid “Inside the Actor’s Studio” chat with Tacky Tourist Photos model Brian Henderson.

You might know him as the brains and the handsome mug behind such TTP classics as “Golden Gate Appetizer,” “Uganda Tourist Trap,” “Dr. Seuss Chorus Line” and “Where Can I Find a Decent Chinese Restaurant?”

Brian wowed the audience with live DVD-style commentary of what was going on his mind before, during and after each pose.

If you’d like to explore bringing the Tacky Tourist Photos exhibition to your museum, school, public library, birthday party, Bar/Bat Mitzvah, luxury resort or cruise ship, please drop us a line at tackytouristphotos@gmail.com.

Oct '11

Pumped in Vegas

High Heel Comfort: Chilling out in style at The Cosmopolitan hotel.

SUBMITTED BY: Brian Henderson   LOCATION: Las Vegas, Nevada (2011)

God knows whose giant sweaty foot slipped on this shoe earlier, but it makes a fantastic lounge chair. Foot fetish folks take notice!

(Photojournalist Brian Henderson is a prolific TTP contributor most famous for his Golden Gate Snacking and Ugandan Equator Dance!)

Jul '11

TTP Founders: “We’re not mean like those other picture-of-the-day Websites!”

Click here to hear Tacky Tourist secrets revealed to WBUR's Monica Brady-Myerov

Thanks to NPR’s “Here and Now” program for today’s shoutout to Tacky Tourist Photos by replaying its 2010 interview with co-founders Ilya Mirman and Darren Garnick (fellow visionary Peter Koziell was with us in spirit).

Amongst the FASCINATING tidbits you’ll learn are:

* Strategies for invading South American countries with pretty college co-eds.

* How French bystanders responded to our creative Eiffel Tower photo shoot.

* The real motivation behind dressing as Anne of Green Gables.

* How to take the most creative vacation photos regardless of whether you are visiting an exotic locale or your neighborhood tourist trap.

* Why Turkish toilet seats are funny; and

* Why TTP refuses to make fun of the people pictured in our featured photos.

Click on the screenshot above to listen to the NPR segment. You’ll be thrilled that you did!

Oct '10

Where can I find a decent Chinese restaurant?

Diehard Bugs Bunny fan Brian Henderson asks, "Which way to Beijing? I knew I took a wrong turn at Albuquerque!"

SUBMITTED BY: Brian Henderson   LOCATION: Mutianyu, China (2010)

There are some places where a GPS won’t help you.

(Photojournalist Brian Henderson is one of our most prolific Tacky Tourist models, entertaining people from San Francisco‘s Golden Gate Bridge to Uganda‘s Imaginary Equator Line!)

Sep '10

Revenge of the Lobster Taco

An ice cream stand in Woods Hole, the famous Cape Cod oceanographic research community.

SUBMITTED BY: Brian Henderson   LOCATION: Woods Hole, Massachusetts (2010)

We admire Brian’s dedication and overall flexibility. Most contributors would look at the height of the lobster claw and say, “Screw it, my leg doesn’t bend that way!”

(Photojournalist Brian Henderson is one of Tacky Tourist Photo’s most prolific contributors. Check out his enthusiasm about the Equator, his monster-like appetite for bridges and his phenomenal ability to mimic the dance moves of statues!)

Jul '10

Sushi at Sea Level

Sushi the camel is an irresistable tourist photo-op on the outskirts of Jerusalem

Sushi the camel is an irresistible tourist photo-op on the outskirts of Jerusalem

SUBMITTED BY: Mark Z. LOCATION: Israel (2010)

What do Israel and Uganda have in common?

Both have slyly transformed invisible geographical concepts into tourist attractions. For Israel to brag about the Dead Sea being the “Lowest Place on Earth” (1378 feet below Sea Level), it set up Sea Level markers for comparison.

You can see how Uganda (and many other countries) cash in on the Equator here.

For the record, Sushi is the same camel who offers tourists a complimentary drool shampoo.

Dec '09

Top 10 Reasons You Should Experience TTP LIVE!


Tacky Tourist Photos is obviously a fun and wildly insightful online project, but there’s nothing like actually meeting fellow fans of the genre!

As you may already know from our fruitful media campaign, we were delighted to participate in our first live art gallery show, New Hampshire’s  Floating Gallery — thank you, Beth Eisenberg — with 14 of the region’s most prestigious photographers, painters, sculptors and multimedia artists.  The Floating Gallery is a phenomenal cultural business model, simultaneously spreading buzz for the local art scene and raising money for several amazing charities.

For those of you who couldn’t join us, here’s a “Top 10” list of awesome things about the event:

#10. MonaPalooza: free photo-op giving visitors an opportunity to provide their take on La Gioconda!


#9. Tacky Tourist Treats: Yodels!  Is there a classier or more appropriate appetizer?


#8. Bargains Galore: For a limited time only, we will match our Floating Gallery prices for our on-line friends. Any Tacky Tourist Photo on this Web site is available as an 11 x 14″ enlargement mounted on archival-quality foamcore for only $50 — with one exception.  The Jessica Simpson “Waxual Harassment” photo is $350.  All profits will benefit the Nashua Soup Kitchen & Shelter. Email us at tackytouristphotos (@) gmail.com for details.


#7. Cash Bar: When our careers soar higher, we will offer an open bar. Even for you, Uncle Henry.


#6. Awkward encounter with artist who also had a Mona Lisa (the TTP equivalent of wearing the same dress to a cocktail party…)


#5. Making young people smile!


#4. Making older people smile!


#3. Mingling with New Hampshire’s cultural elite!


#2. Celebrity Appearances — Brian Henderson, the Tacky Tourist visionary behind the Golden Gate Snack and the Ugandan Tourist Trap photos, graciously greeted fans and answered questions.


#1: Raising money for Nashua Soup Kitchen & Shelter. Thanks to everyone who donated!  If you missed out on feeding the piggy bank, you can still help by clicking here.


If you would like to book a Tacky Tourist art photography show at your quaint art gallery or for your Sweet Sixteen Party or Bar/Bat Mitzvah, please inquire at tackytouristphotos (@) gmail.com.

Jul '09

Goofing off at the Museum (or why I can’t take you kids anywhere)

Comedian Eugene Mirman puts a fresh new spin on a vintage Tacky Tourist Photo

Comedian Eugene Mirman puts a fresh new spin on a vintage Tacky Tourist Photo

SUBMITTED BY: Eugene Mirman        LOCATION: Beersheva, Israel (2007)

The curators of the Israeli Air Force Museum were probably hoping visitors would be awestruck by F-16 fighter jets and want to watch the Hebrew DVD of “Top Gun.”

Or perhaps visitors would want the inside scoop about the Raid on Entebbe, a daring commando operation in which Bad News Bears manager Jack Warden rescued 102 hostages being held by a cannibal, Ugandan dictator Idi Amin.

Instead, comedian Eugene Mirman traveled 6,000 miles to mock an antique Tacky Tourist Photo and give it a fresh new spin.

Not satisfied with one visual gag, he recruited brother Ilya to take his art to a whole new level.

Ilya and Eugene Mirman goofing around at the Israeli Air Force Museum

Word is that the Mirman brothers have been pre-emptively banned from the Louvre!

(Eugene Mirman is the funniest comedian to come from Russia since, well, Yakov Smirnoff. His new book, The Will to Whatevs, offers advice on life, friendship and romance.)