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The Dreaded Bad Travel Photo + Sony Cyber-shot HX20 Giveaway

The Dreaded Bad Travel Photo + Sony Cyber-shot HX20 Giveaway

We’re standing atop the highest mountain on Hong Kong Island looking out at the spectacular views offered by one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The cold November night breeze gives us goosebumps and although we’ve arrived completely underdressed for the occasion, nothing can drag us away from the world-famous Victoria Peak right now.

The two of us have traveled thousands of miles for this moment. It’s the absolute pinnacle of our short visit to this part of the world and this is the breathtaking view we can see from the observation deck.

Hong Kong Victoria Harbor at Night

We soak in the view for a few more minutes before deciding it’s time to capture this moment for us to remember forever. Amy pulls out our trust point-and-shoot camera that has served us so well throughout South-East Asia so far.

She frames the shot and prepares to take the photo that will instantly make everybody that sees it extremely jealous.

*Click*.

Our attempt at Hong Kong Harbor

Okay, so it’s a little underexposed. We tell ourselves that we can fix this as we crank the ISO setting as high as it can go. Although this may make the photo a little grainy, at least we’ll be able to capture the image we want in this low-light situation.

Determined, we both try repeatedly to snap this best picture we possibly can but our efforts are futile. The camera just isn’t good enough for what we want it to do and we’re stuck with the dreaded bad travel photo.

Our best attempt!

Kieron threatens to throw the camera off the edge of the mountain in frustration but we vow not to let this missed opportunity ruin the overall experience.

Despite this, we still look back (and you know we don’t often look back!) with some regret that we weren’t able to take that perfect photograph we so desperately wanted.

A Chance To Recapture That Photo

Hong Kong still remains on our bucket list, primarily so that we can revisit Victoria Peak and snap that photo. We would test our fitness on the way up to the summit (and take plenty of photos along the way!), celebrating our achievement with a romantic picnic on the mountain before taking the historic Peak Tram back down to the bottom…

So why are we writing about the dreaded bad travel photo?

Sony recently launched the Cyber-shot HX20 Digital Camera with the slogan “No More Bad Photos” and we’re partnering with them to test-drive the awesome HX20 and see if it lives up to its claim. With superior auto, 20x zoom and sweep panorama, we can’t wait to put it to the test very soon.

Sony Cyber-Shot HX20

Our Hong Kong photo would look a whole lot better if we could have taken it with the HX20′s 18.2MP Exmor® R CMOS sensor (perfect for low light shooting!) and Optical SteadyShot™ image stabilization to eliminate that blur – if only that technology was around back in 2008!

We’re Giving Away A Sony Cyber-Shot HX20 Digital Camera To One Lucky Reader!

Sony Cyber-shot HX20 Photo CompetitionTo celebrate our partnership with Sony, we’re giving away a Sony Cyber-shot HX20 to one lucky Don’t Ever Look Back reader!

Unfortunately this promotion is open to Australian Residents only but we’re working on another giveaway for our followers from all over the world.

To enter just upload the dreaded bad travel photo that you’d like the chance to recapture and tell us in 25 words or less why you want to take that photo again.

Entries close Thursday June 14 at 12:00PM AEST so be quick!

Click Here To Launch The Entry Form

Make sure you like our Facebook Page below to find out if you’re the winner!

If you had the chance, which dreaded bad travel photo would you most like to recapture?

31 Comments

  1. Posted June 7, 2012 at 12:16 am | Permalink

    I’ve taken a lot of bad travel photos. Sometimes, no matter what you do, you just cant get it (sometimes people wont stop getting in the way, sometimes the weather doesn’t co-operate, sometimes you just dont have time to keep going.

    I would like to return to the Orinoco Delta, NOT on the horrible tour i took, and get some actual GOOD landscape style shots of the Warao in their homes. Trying to take photos from a swiftly moving boat, more swiftly moving tour guide who kept jumping in the way telling me what to photograph, and sometimes hordes of others you can’t avoid…was so disappointing.

    I got some photos i loved from there; but we never stopped on the river, or really visited the Warao (like I was told we would) to get some really great landscape/life photos. Im glad for the portraits we got, but I really wanted more of the Warao and how they lived (not just quick snapshots as we flew by them).

    I mean we were ACTUALLY TOLD we should throw candy at the children because they were poor and candy would make them feel better!

    If I could find a photography tour, or a personal guide into the Orinoco to meet the Warao and photograph their lives, I would go back in a second. I feel there were so many ‘meh’ photos of the actual Warao. Maybe good enough for blog posts, but not good photography.
    Dani Blanchette recently posted..Leaf-Cutter Ants

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 12:20 am | Permalink

      There definitely are plenty of reasons for the bad travel photo but nothing’s more frustrating than something that is in your control (like you’re camera).

      That does sound like a disappointing experience and something would be great to have a second chance at. Really hope you can make it back there one day and snap those photos you missed out on!

  2. Posted June 7, 2012 at 12:18 am | Permalink

    Where do I start? So many of my early (pre Canon SX20) travel photos were a nightmare. I basically have no quality photos from South Korea, haha.

    I would say it would be last year’s Sydney New Year’s Fireworks I most regret not capturing. Those, or the lights of Las Vegas.
    Chris Walker-Bush recently posted..Braving the Desert of Death, Taklimakan

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 12:24 am | Permalink

      I think there’s always a learning curve to improving your photography but it’s definitely painful to look back and not have those memories.

      Those night shots are the toughest as you can see from the post which is why you need a good camera (like the Cyber-shot HX20!)… shame you’re not still living in Australia and eligible to enter our giveaway!

  3. Posted June 7, 2012 at 12:18 am | Permalink

    I can’t enter the contest because I’m not from Australia, but I do have several dreaded travel photos. Usually any kind of night shot, especially in a city turns out bad. It looks even worse if there’s been drinking involved.
    Alouise recently posted..Road Trip Memories 18 – Cowboy Statue

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 12:25 am | Permalink

      Some people think that their photography skills improve after they’ve been drinking heavily. We’ve yet to see proof of these claims though!

      Low-light shooting looks like it could be the biggest enemy for a lot of us!

  4. Posted June 7, 2012 at 12:31 am | Permalink

    LOL! Cool story. That has happened to me so many times! It is crazy what different cameras/settings can add to a photo. Can’t wait for you to test drive this camera and let us know if it lives up to the hype. Too bad I can’t enter.
    Michaela recently posted..Ultimate Beach Breaks From London

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 12:38 am | Permalink

      Haha it’s gotta be one of the most frustrating things about traveling – not being able to get that perfect photo! We’ll definitely share our review of the HX20 on here over the next few weeks.

      Big apologies that you can’t enter – we would’ve loved to have opened this one up to everyone but unfortunately it wasn’t possible. :(

  5. Posted June 7, 2012 at 12:41 am | Permalink

    I’ve played around with last years model of this new camera, and must say Sony has come a long ways in the past few years with their digital cams. I’ve only heard good things about this new one as well.

    Good luck to all of the Aussies who can enter the contest!
    Dustin Main – Skinny recently posted..Slick Street Drumming – Bangkok

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 8:56 am | Permalink

      That is so great to hear! One of our bad photos above may have been taken on an old Sony and we’re looking forward to seeing just how good this new camera is…

  6. Posted June 7, 2012 at 12:51 am | Permalink

    Damn you for only leaving it open to Aussies! I have been dreaming of a new point and shoot for a while now as our current one doesn’t live up to the job. Would have loved this new Sony :)
    Cole @ Four Jandals recently posted..Sheraton Grand Hotel and Spa

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 8:57 am | Permalink

      Haha sorry mate, if we could we would open this one up to the world we would have. Definitely one to consider though when you’re shopping for your new P&S.

  7. Posted June 7, 2012 at 1:58 am | Permalink

    Darn, I was excited about entering. But — not Australian. Anyway, it’s a cool giveaway. I’ve had my share of bad travel photos. With my last point and shoot, a strange, ghostly white spot started appearing in my photos while in Prague, of all places.

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 9:00 am | Permalink

      Sorry Cathy, our next giveaway will definitely be a worldwide one so look out for that. Oh wow, that’s a little scary haha – in that situation you would definitely hope it’s the camera playing up!

  8. Posted June 7, 2012 at 2:26 am | Permalink

    I have a problem with taking night photos. No matter what mode I set my camera to, it’s horrid. Somebody must work on inventing a camera for night scenery!
    Ele recently posted..Graffiti

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 9:00 am | Permalink

      It’s one of the things we’re most looking forward to testing with the HX20 – how good it is with the night shot! We’ll let you know!

  9. Posted June 7, 2012 at 2:34 am | Permalink

    Too bad that we can’t enter the contest! We’ve had our fair share of bad travel photo experiences – the worst was probably when we were on top of the Willis Tower in Chicago and my camera died. Not used to taking pictures with an iPhone (our back-up ‘camera’), most of the photos taken up there feature my thumb :D
    Dani recently posted..Street food junkies on the hunt in Thailand

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 9:03 am | Permalink

      Haha yeah I (Kieron) managed to get my thumb in several photos I took of Amy on her iPhone… she still doesn’t understand how! That’s a shame your camera died up there, we loved some of the views from the Willis Tower too!

  10. Posted June 7, 2012 at 2:40 am | Permalink

    not australian, but GREAT contest! my worst photos are usually taken from within a car, as we’re driving. i know. hope springs eternal.
    wandering educators recently posted..Alternative Lodging Options Around the World

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 9:04 am | Permalink

      The good old moving target – it’s very hard taking pictures from a car, boat, helicopter, etc – guess that’s where some advanced settings could come in handy.

  11. Posted June 7, 2012 at 4:25 am | Permalink

    nice giveaway man!
    flipnomad recently posted..How to Get an Indian Visa in Phnom Penh

  12. Posted June 7, 2012 at 5:26 am | Permalink

    I fancy myself an amateur photog, but if I wanted the “picture perfect” photo, then I would just buy the postcard. I like to appreciate whatever my camera gives me instead of dwelling on what it doesn’t. Good luck with the test drive!
    Rebecca recently posted..Random Weekend: Book: Vroom with A View

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 9:08 am | Permalink

      It’s just not the same having that postcard – we think it’s much more authentic if you’ve taken the photo with your own hands. Call us old fashioned!

  13. Posted June 7, 2012 at 9:51 am | Permalink

    That’s so horrible that your shot turned out like that! I’ve had that sort of frustrating thing happen to me more times than I can count. The most notable was when i was still shooting with film and was on an evening boat cruise on Lake Luzern in Switzerland. I got what I thought were some great photos of the beautiful town lit up at night … none turned out. I was crushed.
    Ellen Small Billard recently posted..Brewery of the Month: Berkshire Brewing Company

    • Posted June 7, 2012 at 10:18 am | Permalink

      Yeah that’s just one occasion that sticks out – it’s happened on countless night cruises as well (Hong Kong Harbor, Singapore River, etc). It’s definitely crushing when you don’t get that perfect photo and imagine it would be even more so when you’re shooting with film and the results don’t come out as expected!

  14. Posted June 7, 2012 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    What a GREAT contest! We all have these photos!

    Like most comments, the night scape pic are the hardest to get!

    I have submitted one….but the most memorable for me really are the missing photos all together. My batteries died, and the spares didn’t work as I took off from the ground for a hot air balloon ride over the fairy chimneys in Turkey. Devastated!!
    I lost/misplaced/had stolen my camera after a couple of days in Trinidad de Cuba, and taking loads of pics of the gorgeous coloured buildings in that cute little town. Was so mad at myself!!
    And then a ruined film by a US developing shop after my first ever visit to NYC…had taken so many photos!

    I also think, though, that a couple of unfortunate and disappointing photos does actually remind you that you need to soak in the sight in front of you, instead of obsessing behind the camera – got to take in the memory yourself, and enjoy it. Sometimes not worrying about getting the shot, and remembering to take everything around you in properly is a good lesson out of a bad photo!

    Looking forward to seeing the results of your test drive!
    Tash recently posted..Native Child and Family Services: Doors Open Toronto

    • Posted June 9, 2012 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for entering the competition Tash!

      Missed photos definitely are heartbreaking – our video camera battery died when we were on the Maid of the Mist in Niagara Falls and we were really pissed! Or the countless times we’ve gone out without a camera and missed opportunities (ie. if only we had our DSLR or a better point-and-shoot when we saw Michael Jordan in Chicago!).

      But good point, soak in the moment as much as you possibly can regardless of how well you manage to capture it on camera.

  15. Posted June 8, 2012 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

    Taking night shot sucks. Will be interested to see how this camera works. The one thing I learned is that for any real good night shots I have taken I needed to use my DSLR and need to either have it on a tripod or resting on something. This eliminated the camera shake – I also have learned to use the timer so when I push the button I don’t move the camera. I still suck, but this has helped a lot.
    Jeremy @ Our Trip To recently posted..Why Being an Expat Gave Our Kids a Huge Travel Problem!

    • Posted June 9, 2012 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

      Night shots are definitely one of the biggest challenges any photographer faces and you’re right, eliminating camera shake is essential. We’ll certainly give the Cyber-shot HX20 a good run at night and come back to our readers with how it performed!

  16. Posted October 17, 2013 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

    This post definitely hits home for me. I have always used a cheapo point and shot because… well… I’m cheap! Some of the most fantastic sights I have ever seen in my life have only been captured with a grainy 80s-camera style photograph. For example, the one time in my life I was on top of Pike’s Peak in Colorado, USA (inspiration for America the Beautiful), I came back with only the memories and really terrible picture that did it no justice at all. Great to hear that you are giving away a new camera to change that for one lucky traveler!
    Passport Dave recently posted..Three Things I Didn’t Know About Florida… And One I Did!

One Trackback

  • By Little experiments | GeoPosted on June 13, 2012 at 3:23 am

    [...] Amy & Kieron (Don’t Ever Look Back) think the Sony Cyber-shot HX20 will help you avoid bad travel photos. [...]

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