Is That a REAL Pumpkin??? Yes, It Is!

20,745

102

28

Introduction: Is That a REAL Pumpkin??? Yes, It Is!

Here's a terrifying technique that will have your neighbors asking, "Is that a REAL pumpkin????

Step 1: It's That Time of Year!

It's Halloween and time to carve a few pumpkins! Here's a technique I've used over the years that really elevated any face you carve into your Halloween Jack-O-Lantern! The process is simple and you can have the best pumpkin on the block with a little time and practice!

What I use:

A REAL Pumpkin (duh)

Something to carve the pumpkin

Modeling clay

Sculpting tools (toothpicks, skewers will do)

Acrylic paints - oranges, red, yellow, white, black

Vegetable oil

That's it!

Step 2: Draw and Cut Your Design...

Start by tracing the outline of your idea on the pumpkin with a marker. I usually freehand the sketch but you could draw it on paper and transfer it if you like. The best part of this technique is that your sins will soon be covered in clay! I'll be honest, I usually just start with a vague concept and let the clay do all of the work. LOL.

Then, take your carving tools and cut out the places where the light should shine through. Most people would stop here... but we aren't most people! Time to break out the clay!

Step 3: This Is the Fun Part!

Now, take your clay and begin sculpting the face on the pumpkin. Use your fingers to blend edges. The clay will stick better than you think. Use the vegetable oil to blend the edges so they become almost invisible to the eye. The oil will make the clay smooth and more willing to disappear into the pumpkin.

I like to make rough shapes before placing on the face. Any voids can be fixed once you have the clay in place. Also, I look at the anatomy of the pumpkin and try to use the natural lines that are already there. If there is a crease that runs down the face of the pumpkin, I try to incorporate it as if it is still part of my structure. This makes for a more organic look in my opinion.

Step 4: Blending It All Together.

Once I am satisfied with the sculpt, I take a brush and soften the details with the vegetable oil. This will help your blending as well. Then, I blot everything down with paper towels so there isn't excess oil on the surface or in the cracks. This will help when we paint!

Step 5: Ready for Paint!

So, this year I decided to try to airbrush my pumpkin. Usually, I paint by hand and it comes out well. I use acrylic paints and have had little issue with the color staying on the clay. You would think it would be a problem, but I've never encountered one and since this is a real pumpkin, there is no need for it to last...

I start with a base orange as close to the pumpkin color as possible. I blend the color into the sides of the actual pumpkin and feather it so it disappears into the actual color of the pumpkin. I then follow up with light layers of reds and yellows to take care of any blending issues in the base color.

Once blended, I paint highlights and shadows. I usually mix my colors with the orange base so the details do not seem so stark. For this guy, I painted the eyeball white with red accents and dotted the center with black.

Step 6: All He Needs Now Is a Few Trick or Treaters!

Can't wait to light this guy up! Happy Halloween!

Here are also a couple of pumpkins I made with this technique in years past...

Also, be sure to check out and vote for the Halloween costume Instructables we made this Halloween!!!

https://www.instructables.com/id/Regan-From-the-Exo...

https://www.instructables.com/id/Junior-Jason-From-...

Thanks!!!!

Pumpkin Carving Contest 2016

Second Prize in the
Pumpkin Carving Contest 2016

1 Person Made This Project!

Recommendations

  • Edible Art Challenge

    Edible Art Challenge
  • Unusual Uses Contest

    Unusual Uses Contest
  • Reclaimed Materials Contest

    Reclaimed Materials Contest

28 Comments

0
grannyjones
grannyjones

5 years ago

This looks so COOL, I want to make a mold and force the pumpkin to grow into it.

0
Abdul BaasitI
Abdul BaasitI

Reply 5 years ago

one up! that's a great idea!

0
RigoC
RigoC

1 year ago

I guess the more accurate title would be, Is it really just a pumpkin? :)
Nice job. Got me thinking about the modeling clay under my sink. Thanks.

0
AnneN40
AnneN40

Question 3 years ago

Here is the picture of where it cracked

image.jpg
0
AnneN40
AnneN40

Question 3 years ago on Introduction

I did this on a pumpkin but woke up to the clay cracking. Any tricks to avoid this from happening?

0
scooterdog13
scooterdog13

5 years ago

I use paper mache and paper clay to make my pumpkins. Once they are dry seal with spar varnish then paint. I can't say they are water proof but if you store them inside they should last for a long time. this is where I learned how to make them.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXo-t37QP6c

0
Intofx
Intofx

Reply 5 years ago

Very cool. Honestly, I LIKE the fact that this a temporary piece. If I could keep it, I would not be motivated to do something new each year. That said, a few of those would be great to accent a main piece! Thanks for the link!

0
4DIYers
4DIYers

5 years ago

Absolutely epic! Such a shame it doesn't last for long.

0
SockBadger2
SockBadger2

5 years ago

Next time you should make the eyeball separately then glue it in. Looks awesome though!

0
Intofx
Intofx

Reply 5 years ago

I thought about that but I wanted it to look like it was all one piece... but since I painted the eye I guess all bets were off. LOL. I even thought about using a melon ball scooper and making an eyeball with that. Maybe next year! Thanks for the comment!

0
furry best
furry best

5 years ago

Doesn't the pumpkin ROT inside? How long does this last?

0
Intofx
Intofx

Reply 5 years ago

Yes, this is not a permanent piece. Like a real pumpkin, it goes out with the trash but that just inspires me to do it again next year!

0
WUVIE
WUVIE

5 years ago

This is so very cool, and opens up a lot of creative avenues! Kudos!

0
Blaise_Gauba
Blaise_Gauba

5 years ago

Ha! Very smart! Nice work!

0
online247365
online247365

5 years ago

Wow! What a great use of clay, ingenuity, and elbow grease. Nicely done!

0
JPod
JPod

5 years ago

Ha ha!! Fantastic pumpkin, and very creative. Thanks for sharing this great idea with all of us. Well done.

0
RastaWife
RastaWife

5 years ago

Creative with a capital "C". Kudos