Out of Darkness into the Light CONTEST - CLOSED

6 min read

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As the days are getting shorter we do our best to lighten our mood with lamps and candles, trying to keep the darkness at bay. This darkness can be literal or more of a metaphor (for anxiety and depression), same with the light.

For this contest, I want you to choose at least one of my stock images and create a photomanipulation with darkness and light.

You do not have to limit yourself to images depicting night scenes with candles or lamps (though those will surely give you a great opportunity for high contrast images), you can also think about other light sources in other (dark) settings. For example moonlight, magic / fairy light, an eclipse, a dark cave, sunlight shining through trees, a sunset,... The only thing I would not recommend is a full on daylight scene since there are less opportunities for showing darkness when the whole setting already is so bright. Also do not limit yourself to just actual light and dark - you can also use the concept to convey a mood, an idea or a whole concept; you can be as abstract as you like!

From a more technical side, what I would love to see is your skills with lighting: how light plays off your main character or object, how the scene is illuminated and how the shadows help to define your image - keeping in mind that darkness is rarely pitch black.

Contest Banner Narrow
  • Theme: Out of Darkness into the Light

  • Mandatory Stock Use: you have to use at least one (1) stock image (sorry textures, brushes, actions etc. don't count) provided by @kuschelirmel-stock, this stock image needs to be easily recognizable in your work and needs to be linked to directly for easy reference, the rest of the stock you use is up to you (NOTE 1)

  • Medium: Photomanipulation (with additional digital media if you want - but the main part has to be a manip)

  • Deadline: The contest runs from 01.11.2020 until EXTENED to 23.01.2021 23:59 CET countdown to deadline | list of local times and dates // CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED

  • Submission Rules: The entry has to be made for this contest and this contest alone - uploaded after the start date and before the deadline - please include a link to this journal to promote the contest! (NOTE 2)

  • Judges: @LadyEvilArts @JaiMcFerran @SireneArcana @FrozenStarRo & @kuschelirmel-stock

  • What we will be judging on: Of course your entry needs to fit the theme, using light and darkness in contrast, using photomanipulation (with additional digital media if you want). We'll be looking at creativity and technical skills (like blending, use of light and shadows in a logical manner, etc) (NOTE 3)

NOTE 1) It should go without saying, but I feel I need to say it anyway for the sake of clarity:

Only entries with legitimate stock sources will be accepted. Google is not a stock site, it is a search engine. It is your responsibility to make sure you adhere to whatever rules are attached to the images you use (link back, credit, notify,... whatever the rules may be). If you use your own images or ones you bought that do not require you to credit, please also indicate this in some fashion.

I reserve the right to decline your entry if I cannot be reasonably sure that all your stock is in fact legal!

NOTE 2) You can enter as many times as you like, but you can only win once. If you want to avoid competing against yourself, you might want to choose just one entry, your best.

NOTE 3) While I am giving you free choice as to what you want to use as the mandatory kuschelirmel-stock image, I would like to make it a point that if you use a premade background with pretty lighting and your own part in the lighting is only minimal, it will not score very high on the technical side of things... I'm not saying it will automatically put you at the bottom of the list, but it will mean the difference between individual places for sure.

How to Enter

Upload your image on dA and specify in the artist's comment that it is for this contest. Then note me on my stock account @kuschelirmel-stock with your entry so I can add it to the Contest Collection. Alternatively you can also just comment on this journal.

-- If I get less than 20 entries I reserve the right to extend or cancel the contest for lack of competition; I hope this will not be the case! --

Edit 2020/12/31: we are at 15 entries so far (thank you!!!) so I think the chances of getting to 20 by Sunday are rather slim. So if that is still the status on Sunday, I will PROBABLY extend the contest in 2 weeks "bits" until the 20 entries are in.

There are super beautiful entries in already and I really want to give out all the cool prizes ;)

Edit Jan 21st 2021: we are at 21 entries!!!! That means the final deadline to get your artwork in is definitely Saturday night, 23rd of January. Though I will not be super strict on the strike of midnight - you will have time until I get to my computer on Sunday morning (which is usually not before 9 or 10 am - but CET ;))

Entries Counter 24

all entries:

Into The Light
hello winter
Darkness Vs. Light
Guiding light
The Ambush
Burning deep
Night bird
Salvation has Fallen
Spooky Forest
Winter memories
Foray in the Deep Sea
From the Darkness of the World, into the Light of
The Heart of the Island
Next Stopp Salvation
Arwen Evenstar
Night Lights
Witch academy
Sad tale
Out of Darkness into Light
Can You See Me Now | Contest Entry

entries are added as they arrive :aww:


prizes are updated as the contest progresses - if you would like to donate something yourself, please leave me a comment or a note :heart:

1st Place

2nd Place

3rd Place

Honorable Mentions

Note to the donors:

Please check if I represented your wishes to donate correctly - thank you so much for the support!!!

I am looking forward to your entries!

:heart: :heart: :heart:

© 2020 - 2021 kuschelirmel-stock
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Butterkuegelchen's avatar

soo hatte kurz vor schluss noch einmal neu angefangen *schweiß von der stirn wisch*

Into The Light
kuschelirmel-stock's avatar

added to the collection, great to see you made it :D :love:

ZedLord-Art's avatar
kuschelirmel-stock's avatar

added! thank you for entering!

HEROINARS's avatar

Hi dear.

This is my entry for the contest:

Burning deep

Thank you for such amazing stocks :)

kuschelirmel-stock's avatar

thank you for the entry! I added it to the collection :aww:

maiarcita's avatar

Hello dear, this is my entry...

The Ambush

Thankss!! :heart:

kuschelirmel-stock's avatar

thank you! Added to the collection!

maiarcita's avatar

Fantastic, thankss for all!! :happybounce:

Mocarro's avatar


I'd also love to entry, thankfully I finished my piece just in time :D

Guiding light
kuschelirmel-stock's avatar

yes you did! great to see your entry! I added it to the collection :aww:

PendragonArts-GEA's avatar

So late but just seeing this. I found out only recently that DA still had challenges going on. This is a great concept muse. I have a really slow artistic process so I know I wouldn't finish it in time but the entries are amazing!!!! If you extend it then I'm pretty sure I can get one done by that time but you it depends on how many entries you need vs. just one possible entry. Congrats on such a great turnout!!! Late Happy New Year! Hope your health is well and keeping your spirit energy clear with all the things happening in the world. May prosperity and blessings be yours. :heart:

kuschelirmel-stock's avatar

thank you so much for your sweet comment :love:

at the moment I really cannot tell you if we will need another 2 or 3 week extension - we are at 18 entries, so it could happen or not ^^; But in any case, if you feel inspired to create based on the theme, I would love to see the outcome even if it is too late to accept as an entry :heart: can't rush a muse ;)

Olgola's avatar

hi, my second entry

Night bird
kuschelirmel-stock's avatar

thank you for your entry! I've added it to the collection :heart:

MostlyWood's avatar

Then tried this one . . .

Felsenland 23

Failed. No file.

What gives?

kuschelirmel-stock's avatar

it's a dA bug, refresh the page and it should work.

MostlyWood's avatar

That works; thank you.

MostlyWood's avatar

Tried to download

Winter Forest with Fog 07

and couldn't . . . Failed. No file.

kuschelirmel-stock's avatar

it's a dA bug, refresh the page and it should work .

MostlyWood's avatar

That works; thank you.

ValentinaStone's avatar

Here's my entry!

Spooky Forest
kuschelirmel-stock's avatar

thank you! I added it to the collection :heart:

Shennikin's avatar

Hello. My entry

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