On the face of it making a bad photo might seem like a simple task. Don't we do that every day? I think for most photographers the bad ones tend to outnumber the good ones manyfold. Most of us weed them out quickly, and we'd never think of showing them to others.
But making a bad photo on purpose can actually be rather difficult. What does a bad photo look like? Is it out of focus? Boring subject matter? Poor composition? Misexposed? Scratches and dust specks? Chemical stains? Digital noise? Camera bumped during a slow exposure? Faces cropped? Derivative of other work? HDRed to death? Too slick and perfect? Some combination of the above?
No. Injecting a deliberate "error" won't ensure poor quality. In fact if the error is pronounced enough there's a good chance the resulting photo will be interesting. Artists have managed to leverage all of the above mistakes to make very good photographs, photos which have landed in the finest museums and collections.
Think of Miroslav Tichy, whose photos are so imperfect they wind up being sort of perfect. In the music world an equivalent might be a band like The Shaggs. Of course the opposite is also true. Photos which are too slick are often quite boring. Think of Kenny G., or his visual equivalent.
I want to see your worst photo. I'm hesitant to define bad. You might think of it as imperfect or as perfect or something else entirely. Any photo that is uninteresting probably qualifies.
Send your bad photo to me (taken by you, jpg < 200 KB) before August 15, 2011. I will run all submitted images together online, then open them up for polling. Whichever entrant receives the most "worst" votes will receive a hand-printed photo of one of my favorite bad images, the chance to run whatever images they want in a future post, and everlasting anti-glory.
This is all in good fun. In a world of best-of competitions, it's a chance to take yourself not so seriously.
Good luck. Now be bad...