Saturday, October 23, 2010

Halloween 2010 Blog Party Part 1: Jack O' Lanterns from the Last 2 Halloweens

2008 and 2009 Sorceress Jack O' Lanterns

For this Jack O' Lantern from 2008, I turned the pumpkin on its side while carving and used the stem for the nose. This allows the pumpkin's natural lines or ribs to appear as wrinkles when a face is carved. I used a long, black Halloween wig for the hair. To display the Jack O' Lantern, however, I actually placed this one face-up as opposed to face-forwards. This meant lying the wig on the ground on the porch and placing the pumpkin on top of it. I thought this would work as the pumpkin used was small, and placed by the door the Trick-Or-Treaters would really get a better look at it this way.

The following pictures are of a similar Jack O' Lantern from 2009:

I used a bruise on the pumpkin to appear as a mole. I think the affect was great!

The eyes were tricky: I carved holes for the eyes and used the pieces that were removed for the pupils. I carved them into egg-like, oval shapes and removed the skin. I continued to slice away to make them rounder, and when satisfied, positioned them in the eye-holes and held them in place with toothpicks. I felt this was worth the trouble because it allowed the light to shine behind the pupils all the way around.

From this angle, you can see that the smile is not only very crooked, but the corners are also curled. This makes the smile very mysterious!

2008 Cannibal Jack O' Lantern

These are pictures of a larger pumpkin I used, which I thought would look great eating some smaller pumpkin victims!

I carved a large mouth and used the remaining pieces from the mouth for the larger pumpkins sinister hands. For the smaller pumpkins I carved three of their faces to have different frightened expressions. I tried using a black Sharpie permanent marker for the front pumpkin, and I like the bold affect this makes. In the future, I may consider only drawing the faces of the smaller pumpkins, as candles cannot be placed inside, and thus the black marker would stand out better.

Most of the smaller pumpkins are placed on the hands in front of the larger pumpkin to create the affect that the larger pumpkin is bringing them slowly towards his mouth in a frightening act of cannibalism, yet one of the tiny pumpkins is already being chewed!

2009 A Mad Scientist's Victim (or An Artistic Depiction of a Migraine)

To carve this pumpkin, I turned it on its side and carved the face on the bottom, using its blossom end or belly-button as the nose.

I carved the lid in what would normally be the side of the pumpkin, but when placing it back on top, I replaced it upside down so that it could act as a kind of bowl for its seeds and fibrous strands - when piled on top of the bowl-lid, the seeds and fibrous strands look like brains!

Though not visible from the photo, I chose to scatter some of the seeds and "brains" along the ground around the pumpkin. I added stitches around the head to give the impression that this individual has suffered a similar fate to another famous stitched up character often referred to as "Frankenstein."
Perhaps from personal experience as a migraine sufferer, I felt that drooping eyes with pupils rolled towards the top and a frown that exposes the teeth would be an effective way to portray pain. Perhaps other migraine sufferers can identify with this poor guy!

I hope this has been enjoyable, and if anyone would like any further instructions on how I created these particular Jack O' Lanterns please feel free to leave a comment. As always, I also welcome comments, suggestions, and constructive criticism.

If you have any Jack O' Lantern photos you would like to share with me, again, please leave a comment and a link, and I would love to check them out! Believe me, I am always looking for inspriration!

Though I am definitely no professional, I would be willing to offer suggestions for your pumpkins and tips on how to create a particular type of Jack O' Lantern.

This has been Part 1 of my Halloween Blog Party 2010 posts. I plan on posting more entries for the blog party, and will most likely end them with a final set of photos of my Jack O' Lanterns from this year's Halloween. I do not yet know what I will be carving, but I welcome any suggestions or links to inspirational Jack O' Lantern pictures.

For now, happy carving everyone!

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