Worst Fear WIP



  • More to do, but here's where I'm at. I don't know about you, but back when I was a kid there weren't always light switches in basements. You had to muster up your courage, make it to the bottom of the stairs (without being eaten), and fumble around in the darkness for the cord on the lightbulb. And sometimes...those cords broke. I don't know of a child who wasn't certain at some point that they would be attacked by a monster in the basement, so my little girl here is quite brave (though she does have a death grip on the handrail). Thoughts welcome, it's lovely to see what everyone else is working on as well.
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  • That is scary! My suggestions would be to possibly make the lightbulb bigger and a little closer, so it ups the suspense of her being so close, and yet so far to turning it on. I would also maybe play with having the underside of the stairs not be covered with a siding, so it's creepy and dark under there, and you could add some eyes. Make it feel like something could easily grab her legs.

    Anyway, it's really good so far. 🙂



  • @rhirsch Oh my gosh, this is spot on. I remember being scared to death by the water boiler when I was little, so maybe adding some gadgets on the boiler and populate the basement with more clutter? That would give other places for other creepy things to exist. Super good so far.



  • You mean, only kids are supposed to feel this way? Whoa, I didn't get the memo. Anyway, great concept! What if you made her shadow longer, too, because the light is way up at the top of the stairs. And maybe boxes and junk stored in the basement. Those odds and ends always add lots of creepy shadows.



  • @rhirsch I would maybe make it even darker around the rest of the basement besides for the light that is coming from the upstairs. Just have the shadows of the fingers peaking out near the stairs and maybe just the glow of the eyes vs having the full shadow.



  • oh yeah!



  • I was always afraid to go down to the basement....the furnace was always a shadowy monster for me.
    I agree with Tess making the light bulb just with in reach would intensify the tension. Check out Jon Klassen's illustrations in the book The Dark to be inspired!



  • @tessw Good point. The basement looks a little "safe" yet. I'll play with it.



  • @chip-valecek I like the idea of glowing eyes. Hmm....the wheels are turning...



  • @elaine-bruce My thought with the lightbulb was a "so near, but yet so far" sort of thing, but I'll try it closer and see if it ups the tension. Thanks.



  • @chip-valecek I'm just concerned about it getting too dark, as I've been told too dark isn't good for children's picture books and I'd like to put this one in my portfolio for the SCBWI conference in a few weeks. But I'll play around with it, it ain't over until it's submitted to the Worst Fear thread.



  • Made a few changes...still have to tweak some values I think, the box with the eyes blends a bit too much with the background, I think.
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  • @elaine-bruce I have to say, after looking at "The Dark", I'm not so worried about my piece not being light enough. He does an excellent job with it.



  • I think maybe getting rid of the end of the bannister, I keep thinking she has one leg forward. The silhouette is not very clear. But maybe you could also lift one of the back legs--you can reach a bit farther with one leg on the ground, ya know? Also the shadow of the girl if it is right against the wall, would be partially on the wall too, I feel like part of it is missing. Anyways this is coming along great! Love the creepy eyes and darkness beneath the stairs.



  • @holleywilliamson You're right, she needs some shadow on the wall. Thanks.