Art Biz with Liz: Halloween and Pumpkin Carving

Like many others, my housemates and I have been laying low this semester. So far, we haven’t done very many “fun” things together due to hectic schedules and COVID-19; however, we wanted to do something special for Halloween. But what would be a good way to celebrate the holiday from home? We turned to the jack-o’-lantern, one of the most recognizable symbols of Halloween.

Last week, I stopped by the produce section in Meijer and picked out the best-looking pumpkins that I could find. That is, pumpkins that were round with sturdy stems and no questionable spots or bruises. Yesterday, we cleaned them off and prepped them for carving. It had been years since I last carved a jack-o’-lantern, and anyone who has ever carved a pumpkin knows that it can be more difficult than it looks. Regardless, the process was easy enough. We had a few tools from old pumpkin-carving kits, like mini saws for detail work and a scraper scoop to remove all the pulp. We set the pumpkins atop of newspaper on the floor and drew faces on them with Sharpies. After cutting out the tops and gutting the pumpkins, we started carving them by making simple, rough cuts with the bigger knives. Once the big pieces of pumpkin were out of the way, we worked on detailing and cleaned up the edges of our designs.

“Liz, how are you so good at carving pumpkins?” one of my friends asked.

“It’s because she likes artsy things. Look at how symmetrical the eyes are,” another replied.

Contrary to what my friends said, I most definitely am not a pro at carving pumpkins. In fact, I chose a simple design for my pumpkin because I was afraid of botching it! If anyone, the pro at pumpkin carving would be one of my friends, especially with how awesome her cat design turned out.

That said, I do like artsy things, as evident by this blog. I also consider carving pumpkins to be an artsy activity. Plus, it’s a great activity to do to showcase your Halloween spirit. Whether you stick with standard triangles or decorate your pumpkin with paint, placing the finished product on your front steps is the perfect way to share your masterpiece with the neighborhood.

Happy Halloween!

The finished product! My pumpkin is on the far right (a squirrel nibbled at his tooth).

Elizabeth S

Hello! My name is Elizabeth, and I'm a junior who enjoys writing about the presence of art in everyday life. Through this blog series, I'll be experimenting with different types of art and discussing how art relates to current events. I'll also be documenting my perspective on creative writing, literature, musicals, and more. Enjoy!

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