Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
I remember the book 'Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark' being a popular checkout at the library of my elementary school. How this book and its sequels wound up as reading material for children astounds me to this day. While the stories themselves were just okay, the horror lies with the grisly, graphic, and horrific illustrations running through the book. The books (or at least the first) were illustrated by Stephen Gammell, who rendered pure nightmare fuel with ink and washes. As creepy as the work is, it holds my morbid fascination. The works have a nicely surreal blend of realistic detail and more stylized/exaggerated attributes that really leave a lasting impact on the viewer. Each monster or figure drawn seems to come straight from the most twisted of nightmare worlds. I have no picked up the book in years and I still shudder at some of the imagery.