Scary Year, Scary Pictures, a Photo Contest Entry!

A Scary Year Means Scary Pictures…right?

Monday I found a post on Janine’s Confessions of a Mommyaholic about a Halloween photo contest hosted by PicMonkey. Since I use PicMonkey all the time for editing photos and creating photo collages (and signs) for my blog and personal projects, I thought, “I’m so in!” Even though it isn’t Halloween yet I figured I could find some old  scary pictures to work with.


Once I started flipping thought my picture folders I realized that it’s been a pretty scary year for the kiddos: E broke her wrist just before summer; on Sunday a few weeks ago N had to be carried off the football field, golf-carted to the car and brought to the emergency room to get crutches; and the following Thursday during a scrimmage J twisted his knee and had to go to the ortho. While out with the knee injury and watching N’s next game, J got hit in the eye when another child jumped for a ball and banged heads with him. J ended up not only limping from the knee sprain but with a swollen shut right eye. It wasn’t pretty. In fact, the pictures I found, three of which were taken in the ER, made me a little sick to my stomach – the kids all look so damn sad…

So sad...but not scary enough!

So sad…but not scary enough!


I know this is probably only scary for our family and has nothing to do with Halloween or the contest but I thought maybe I could “ghoul-‘em-up” and see how well PicMonkey’s tools actually work.


I will admit, I play around with a lot of photo editing and video editing software, some I love and some which are over my head (Creative Cloud for example, right now it’s tough, I’m still learning the programs and by learning I mean I haven’t really started yet.)


Anyway, I guess I say all of that to say – this is fun for me, it’s something I really enjoy doing. Even if you aren’t especially skilled at or loving the thought of editing pictures, when you have the need I’m going to recommend you give PicMonkey a try. You can use it for free and you never have to upgrade but once you get the hang of it, you’ll want to unlock the additional tools.


I knew I wanted to play around with four of the Halloween palettes since I had four faces to work with. On E I used Vampires and Witches, on J I used Undead and on N I used Zombies. I couldn’t bring myself to use Demons, too scary, and I had a hard time putting any blood or gore on the kids! Try it, it’s very creepy to do this to your own kids. Here’s a tool bonus tip…you can mix and match any of the tools/palettes so I ended up using some of the beauty tools and everyday filters. E’s red fingernails…created from the lip tint palette that I shaped into fingernails with the eraser (I should’ve made them pointy!!!) And all of them have (edited in) lipstick and mascara – I’m just not telling the boys, they don’t know.


I could have gotten totally carried away and perfected some of the brush strokes that went over the edges but I just wanted to keep it simple and not be up all night working on a “fun” picture.


The result:

scary kids photos

Now That’s Scary!


Fun, right? The kids love it, even if it is a little creepy to see yourself like that. It was simple and most (maybe all?) of the tools have an instruction box that pops up when you click it. I wasn’t reading them at first but once I did I was really psyched – look at that football players eyes! One of my favorite parts of the picture and I didn’t get how to fit the overlays “under his lids” until I read those simple instructions.


I did not receive any compensation for this post, I bought my own PicMonkey license and wrote this because I entered the contest and had a lot of fun creating this picture. I hope it encourages you to give it a try. I’ll show you some of my other PicMonkey creations in another post and until then you can check out these:

Getting to Bloggy Boot Camp for signs

Three Simple Steps for Better Pictures at the Beach for another simple collage

Knock Your Socks Off (a delicious cocktail) and The First Day of School (there are two pic examples on this one) for simple photos with frames

and finally The Pumpkin Hater’s Pumpkin Soup recipe to see a collage with text boxes

All of these photos/collages have been edited with PicMonkey. Do you use PicMonkey? What software do you use for editing and creating? Let me know in the comments…


Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog!



  1. Holy cow -you need to win the contest. You did a great job!! Look at them. That’s what’s called making lemonades out of lemons. Or spooky/hilarious photos out of sad ones.

  2. This is fantastic. Fantastic and creepy!! I love all the eyes. N’s look super cool. E’s eyes in the bottom pic look like the cat from Puss N’ Boots! And J looks less sad, more ‘don’t mess with me’ with all his gore. Hope it’s a winner!!

    • The scariest part…her eyes in the bottom picture we not edited, those are her very own dark brown eyes, although they look black here. The whites were purple-y. I couldn’t have made them more scary.

  3. Seriously Stephanie, I am with Tamara and you need to win this contest for sure now. I love what you did and even how you explained it. And I am with you, I couldn’t put blood and gore n my kids, think that would have freaked me out, too much. Great job and so glad you had fun with this!! 🙂

    • Thank you Janine. It really is something I could do 24/7, I’m always creating stuff with my pictures. I was pretty excited when I saw your post about the contest so thanks for sharing! Fingers crossed for the win!

  4. If you do not win, it is a total travesty! Those pictures are AMAZING…although, I am so sorry you have the originals to work with! UGH.-Ashley

  5. I haven’t played with those overlays yet…must do that tomorrow! I started using PicMonkey earlier this year and used it for about a week before I upgraded. SO worth the money. I use it at least once a day..usually more!

    • I know what you mean, I use it all the time too. I would’ve thought I didn’t need the instructions but wow, what a difference once I took the time to read them. I bet you’ll love the new stuff.

  6. I LOVE this!! You did an awesome job! I haven’t played with them yet. I hope you win! That would be so cool! Now you should write a PicMonkey tutorial!

  7. Haven’t tried it yet but you make it look fun! Hope everyone is 100% and ready for Halloween, no more crutches or stitches until the end of the year…… Deal?

  8. Pingback: Getting Spooky with our Halloween Bash {Ladies Only Blog Share} | A Dish of Daily Life

  9. Yours turned out so much better than mine did!! I use PicMonkey sometimes too and tonight got sidetracked for the longest time playing with the Halloween edits. I’m going to take more pics tomorrow with the sole intention of making day of dead photos!!

  10. I love PicMonkey. They have such great features and they’re always coming out with new stuff!

  11. My goodness, your little ones have had quite the year! Love PicMonkey. I probably shouldn’t admit it, but I use it all the time even though I have Photoshop. It’s just so darn easy to add quick enhancements! Great job with your scary photos!

  12. That first set of pictures is so sad! But I love the zombified version. I never knew you could do that with picmonkey.

    • Oh, that first picture is awful. AWFUL! It hurts to look at how sad they are. Being in that emergency room was the worst. That being said, you definitely need to give PicMonkey a try…it’s pretty impressive.

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