This process started as the ultimate way to carve a jack-o-lantern, but other materials can be used to great artistic effect. Carved in bas-relief, the design is only revealed once the material is back-lit.

Step 1: Materials List

What you will need:

1. A pumpkin, or some slightly translucent material.
2. carving tools (if all you've got is a knife, it's going to be hard).
3. light.
4. an image or an idea.

Optional (but recommended)

1. something to project with.
2. markers to transfer your design.
3. a basic graphics program of some kind.
I should have paid attention when it said get carving tools! The knife was difficult!!! But you inspired me to make this guy :D Except he promptly started molding the next day it was fun to make!
nice! i'm honored to have been your inspiration. thanks for sharing!<br><br>
what other material can this be done in? im more interested in doing it in a material that wont rot like a pumpkin, something more durable for an art project
well, I've tried watermelon, pumpkin, rigid styrofoam (for plant arranging), ethafoam (an open-foam made of polyethylene - often used in packaging materials - it's not rigid), and the kind of rigid foam that's made from expanded polystyrene beads. I don't recommend the watermelon or the expanded polystyrene beads. They're both somewhat translucent, but the expanded polystyrene beads are annoying to sculpt, and a bit too opaque, and the watermelon is a bit too translucent, and the rind does not have an even translucence. The other two foams work well. you can see the styrofoam in the "babyface" picture in the instructable. I haven't tried the craft pumpkins made out of foam, but I will some day.
Thank you so much, what an amazing Instructable. I made an Obama pumpkin!
Dude, thank you so much for this! I wanted to do a really cool pumpkin this year but I had no idea how people got the different levels of shading on their gourds. Your instructions were simple and thorough and the part on how to make a template in GIMP was great. I'll shoot you a pic once I get it done. <sup>_</sup><br/>
you have to much time on your hands, that is cool. you need to enter in some contests or something...
It does take a couple hours to carve one of these things. but who doesn't have a couple hours for halloween goodness?
i want to make a santa pumpkin
sick pumpkin
It kind of looks like Mr. 47 from Hitman with his ears sticking out.
That's who I thought it was - (Mr. 47 from Hitman) LOL Very nice carving and tutor! If you guys would like to create a shaded pumpkin - I have over 600 shaded patterns on my site. And a How to on the entire process, No Projector needed. (I use transfer paper). St0ney stoneykins.com
Thanks! nice site! so many stencils! I like the projector method because then you get a 2D image that is transformed to the 3D curvature of the pumpkin, however curvy it is. For transfers, it's better if you have a large pumpkin with a fairly flat side, no? I actually like to use an image that takes up most of the pumpkin, so if I used a transfer, it would be pretty distorted. I also like the way the 3D projection creates an image that can't be interpreted from other angles. It creates a nice little surprise when you can finally see it.
What is your website for the patterns to use for carving pumpkins> Thanks - Linda
Anyway it looks awesome.
thanks- i did another one this year, (with vide) you can see it at:<br/><br/><a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.stripmindmedia.net/blog/2007/11/halloween-07.html">http://www.stripmindmedia.net/blog/2007/11/halloween-07.html</a><br/>
I think the end product looks like the bad scientist from half life 2 idk his name, maybe some one can help me out
AHA! that's ecactly what i thought!!! (the G man btw)
lol G man thanks
I think it looks like Voldemort from Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire, in a halucenation where he is wearing a business suit.
You just ruined my life. I always thought my pumpkins were good, until I saw this.
thanks guys. I updated it some this morning, because, well, this is the season, right? -aaron.
with a black marker and a piece of plastic this works well with a flash light too. thats what I use when I want to use a custom image that isnt free hand.
this is amazing.
Aaron,<br/>very cool stuff. I've been experimenting on pumpkins for years. I'm no artist, just an amateur who loves to explore this stuff. You can check it out at <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.tagyerit.com/pumpkin.htm">http://www.tagyerit.com/pumpkin.htm</a><br/><br/>But if you want to really blow your mind do a search for &quot;lithopane&quot; in Google images.<br/>

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