Behind the Scenes Feature: Caution: Scary Street construction ahead!

In preparation for Scary Street, Walter Wick made this sketch using references of old European villages found in books and on the internet. Model makers then built cardboard mock-ups to test the scene in front of the camera (see below).


Mike Galvin measures the sidewalk staircase. Using the sketch as a guide, the street and buildings had to be precisely arranged and assembled in order to achieve the desired illusion when viewed through the camera. Cardboard mock-ups were gradually replaced with finished models, while Wick made changes and the model makers added flourishes along the way.


Randy Gilman uses a rotary tool to carve stones into the high density polyurethane foam. This effective technique was used throughout the book in both the buildings' exteriors and interiors.


Emily Cappa measures and constructs a window for a scary street building. Custom windows and numerous other details were carefully crafted for each building. Such attention to detail gave each building its own unique character.


Walter Wick (left) and Mike Galvin (right) make final adjustments on the Scary Street set.

Wick photographed the completed set in three separate lighting layers: One with "moon" light, a second with miniature interior lights, and a third with "ambient light" to highlight different areas of the scene. The sky is a digital painting made by Wick.

Click to see lighting layers

scary street
On a Scary Scary Street ©Walter Wick, 2008,
from Can You See What I See? - On a Scary Scary Night