Nencki Set of Fear Inducing Pictures (SFIP)

Project Leader: LOBI

Laboratory of Brain Imaging



The Set of Fear Inducing Pictures (SFIP) project was supported by a grant from the National Science Centre (DEC-2011/03/D/HS6/05951).

Most anxiety research focused on social anxiety as well as small animal and blood-injection-injury subtypes of specific phobia that were considered as model disorders for exploring the neurobiological and cognitive mechanisms of anxiety. Pictorial material employed in this research originated usually from different existing standardized affective stimuli databases. However, most of these databases includes insufficient number of phobia-relevant pictures and lack of normative fear/arousal ratings from specific representative groups of fearful individuals.

The Set of Fear Inducing Pictures (SFIP) is the first standardized set of photography dedicated to study phobic disorders. It was developed and validated in two independent studies. In study 1, normative ratings of valence, arousal and fear were collected for a large number of fear-relevant and neutral photographs from small animal fear, blood/injection fear, social fear and non-fearful control groups. These ratings were used to select pictures for the final version of the SFIP which was rated in study 2 by social, spider and blood/injection fearful as well as nonfearful control individuals.

The resulting Set of Fear Inducing Pictures (SFIP) contains 956 high-quality social, spider and blood/injection fear-related photographs as well as neutral pictures. The vast majority of SFIP pictures originates from the Nencki Affective Picture System (NAPS; Marchewka et al., 2014) or from nonprofit photography stocks and is freely available to the scientific community for noncommercial use by request. The SFIP picture ratings from social, spider, blood/injection fearful and non-fearful control samples as well as their physical characteristics (luminance, contrast, and complexity) are available here: supplementary material.

Please note that SFIP was developed as a part of the Nencki Affective Picture System. To request the free available SFIP photographs for non-profit academic research purposes, please read and fill out the FORM


Marchewka A., Żurawski Ł., Jednoróg K., Grabowska A. (2014) The Nencki Affective Picture System (NAPS): introduction to a novel, standardized, wide-range, high-quality, realistic picture database. Behavior Research Methods, 46(2), 596–610. doi:10.3758/s13428-013-0379-1. Supplementary material

Michałowski J. M., Droździel D., Matuszewski J., Koziejowski W., Jednoróg K., Marchewka A. (2016) Set of Fear Inducing Pictures (SFIP): The development and validation in fearful and non-fearful individuals. Behavior Research Methods. doi:10.3758/s13428-016-0797-y Supplementary material