Stuck at home, a travel writer recreated the most cliché travel photos she could find to compare 2019 and 2020

  • Travel writer Sharon Waugh has been bored stuck at home.
  • To pass the time, she started recreating the most cliché travel photos she could find from home, often using everyday household items.
  • She's made a toilet paper roll Taj Mahal and used an ironing board in lieu of a surfboard. 
  • Waugh told Insider she hopes the photo series cheers people up "while we wait for things to get better."
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

2020 has not been a great year for travelers (or anyone, really), as the global pandemic has thrown a wrench in most people's vacation plans.

While this is annoying for some, it's especially difficult for those whose livelihood depends on traveling.

But Sharon Waugh, a South Africa-based freelance travel writer, is trying to see the humor in her life without travel.

Bored at home, she's been recreating some of the world's most cliché travel photos from her living room, and she shared with Insider some of her best photos so far.

Sharon Waugh is a freelance travel writer based in Cape Town, South Africa.

She's been to 57 countries and spent five years working on a US-based cruise line, which is when she started her travel blog, "The Sharonicles."

"I love the combination of traveling the world and making people laugh, and I have tried to find ways to continue doing both as I transitioned from a life at sea to one on land," she told Insider.

Little did she know that life on land would soon be even more stationary than she expected.

Waugh said she spent the first part of lockdown writing for a Chinese travel app.

When that work dried up, she said she started "dreaming about the places I had written about and reminiscing on my past travels."

She decided to pass the time by recreating cliché travel photos she kept seeing.

"I'll probably just keep doing them until I am able to travel freely again," she said, adding that she's created around 50 photos to date.

She takes her inspiration from Instagram, picking images she's seen "too many versions of."

She then finds a similar image that's in the public domain and recreates it at home, using her phone's timer function.

Waugh said she's used a wide variety of unconventional household items to prop up her phone for the perfect shot. "If I'm happy with the result, I post it," she said.

"I think a lot of people are missing the freedom we used to have to travel. I just hope to bring a smile to their faces while we wait for things to get better," she said of her photos.

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