Sorry I'm posting this so late in the game but carved pumpkins don't really last that long in the warm Californian weather(it was 90 degrees the other day).
This is the first time in... 9 years since I've carved a pumpkin.
Man, that's a long time.
So I can say that I'm a beginner to pumpkin carving(considering my pumpkin back in 5th grade was a pile of crap).
This year you've probably all seen the creepy realistic zombie pumpkin and the human faces one but let's be honest: We aren't all gifted with extreme pumpkin carving skills. Plus we probably don't have their fancy tools.
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
Nice Pumpkin - Any shape or size of your liking.
Exacto Knife or Small knife or Blade
Your choice of color Pen
Paper Towel(s) or Dry Cloth
This pumpkin carving of Zero took me about an hour or so. The Sally(which I made earlier today but sadly don't have an instructables for) took me about an hour to carve and maybe 15 minutes to gut the pumpkin. My S.O made the Jack and he finished around the same time too.
Step 1: GUT YOUR PUMPKIN.
Okay, so I didn't take pictures of gutting a pumpkin but I'm assuming you all know how to do that.
Make sure there is no "stringy" stuff left.
PREP YOUR TOOLS FOOLS
Okay so for my younger viewers: Don't use an exacto knife without your parents permission and supervision.
It is sharp and dangerous.
There is no need for you to go to the ER on Halloween day.
FIND A PICTURE(or stencil OR you could free hand it like I did and become a BAMF) OF ZERO THAT YOU LIKE.