US photographer Joshua Hoffine, 40, uses daughters to recreate horror movie scenes

Updated: 15 Jul 2013
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scary photo
Watch out: A creature lurking under the staircase for the innocent child is a classic representation of the kind of cliched horror Hoffine is interested in
 
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Bedtime terrors: The figure of the devil emerging from the bedroom floor blurs the boundary between fairy tale stories and horror
 
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Close to home: The 40-year-old photographer's daughter is pictured here. He said she could only perform in the scene for short periods of time
 
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Haunting: Hoffine has received complaints about the sinister nature of some of his photographs
 
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Disturbing: The picture on the bedside table adds to this photograph's strange and eerie effect
 
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Fearful: Hoffine received hate mate for some of his work, which people thought was 'sinister and menacing'
 
It's a well-worn tale. After too many scary stories about things that go bump in the night, imaginative children pester their parents about the monster under their bed and spiders in the basement.
 
Classic childhood fears are the subject for American photographer Joshua Hoffine, 40, who has created a collection exploring the nature of a scary story.
 
From the silhouette of a girl in pigtails being watched by a creature hiding underneath the stairs to a terrified child clutching a teddy as giant hands emerge from under her bed, the vivid images give cliched scenes an eerie feeling.
 

Mr Hoffine was inspired by reading bedtime stories to his four daughters, two of whom appear in the collection.
 
He told the Observer that he featured his daughter is featured in the haunted bed picture, but he ensured she was not scared by the scene.
 
Mr Hoffine said: 'She could only really perform for about a minute. I'd have cookies baking in the background'.
 
He said the most controversial of the pictures is the image of a screaming child in a nappy being cornered by a wolf.
 

'This one I get hate mail for- it crosses the line for so many people. The wolf is universally read as a sexual predator,' he told an Observer reporter.
 
He is an avid fan of horror but believes it is much more than mere entertainment.
 
The freelance photographer, who has been published in art magazines, says his love for horror goes beyond the thrill of a scary story: 'I believe that the horror story is ultimately concerned with the imminence and randomness of death, and the implication that there is no certainty to existence.
 
'Horror tells us that our belief in security is delusional, and that the monsters are all around us,' the 40-year-old says on his website.
 
 
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