You chose a great photograph, although I feel it could have been edited more to fit the mood/nature of the story. Using gradients and blending tools are a great technique when "merging worlds"
I am glad you used a pinker color for the skin tone on the children because the light is warm in your background color. I do wish the kids were more centered in your picture and maybe spaced farther apart so you can show depth, like by placing one in between the trees.
omg, omg, I didn't see the guy who is hiding behind the tree first!! so funny. and really like the style, it looks like child's illustration
I really like the image that you chose to be the setting for this story! It seems really easy to use since you have so many nooks and crannies to hide things behind. Plus, you have a lot of depth in this photo to play with. One thing that I think would be great is to reduce the size of the witch behind the tree just slightly - it seems like since the foresst is pretty deep, that she might be a little bit smaller. I could also see you playing with an ALMOST complete silhouette instead of a total silhouette. what I mean by this is maybe you can add back in just a touch of detail into her face / hand so that you see just a bit of light bouncing of of the important details. The reason I'm suggesting this is beause the rest of the scene is so well lit, that it would be hard for her to be totally black since the tree she is hiding behind is still kind of a mid tone? know what i mean? I think it would be a quick fix! I love the pose of her! I also think that it could be cool for you to use another layer on about 50% transparency, and brush over some of the foliage a little with the same brushes you used in the kids! I think you did a great job making the kids the focus, I love their vibrant colors against the backdrop of the leaves.