Pumpkins

Nikki McClure pumpkin stencil. A striking pumpkin carving from artist Nikki McClure. -- Josè Mandojana --

Nikki McClure pumpkin stencil. A striking pumpkin carving from artist Nikki McClure. — Josè Mandojana —

The really neat thing about carving pumpkins is that it’s a transformative activity. You’re taking a smooth surface — an organic substance (no two pumpkins are the same) — and changing it into something that resembles a human being. What’s even better is that it doesn’t last — perhaps that’s why I like both pumpkin carving and sand castle building. Neither one of them are permanent art installations; both forms of art are ephemeral.

Oh, and they are also architectural. I love planning out how a pumpkin’s structure will support whatever I carve into it, and how to create a relief impression. Given the varieties of light and of differing layers in the pumpkin skin, I have successfully carved entire landscapes of haunted houses, moons over a cemetary, ghosts rising from tombs and dark and mystical figures striding across a lost road. It’s wonderful to show somebody what can be accomplished with a sharp knife and an orange organic globe.

But what kind of carvings do my kids prefer? A face of course. Preferably a scary one.

Please like & share:

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Enjoy what you read? Share!