The difference between carving and sculpting is that you when you carve you actually hollow the pumpkin out and work through the skin into the interior of the pumpkin so you can release light from inside. When you sculpt, you just take a portion of the surface of the skin off and that exposes some other color.
Materials for Pumpkin Luminaries:
Pumpkins in various sizes
Spoon or melon baler
Linoleum carving tool
Carbon paper or graphite pencil
Glass votive holders and votive candles
1. Cut the top out of the pumpkin with a serrated knife and scoop out the seeds and fiber from the inside. (The seeds can be saved for your own pumpkin patch next year, or baked for a snack.)
2. For a checkerboard design, draw an even number of vertical lines down the sides of the pumpkin from the stem to the base, using the natural lines provided by the pumpkin.
3. Draw four or more horizontal lines around the pumpkin (figure A). The result will remind you of a globe, with latitude and longitudes marked.
4. Use the linoleum cutter (figure B) to carve out alternate squares. Be sure to carve each square with cuts in the same direction -- horizontally or vertically. The resulting smooth skin and the relief-carved areas will be different colors and textures.
5. For lighting, remove the lid and place a lit votive inside.
6. For a "holes & spirals" design, the holes are made by pushing the carving tool deep into the surface of the pumpkin and giving it a twist (figure C). Create holes all over the pumpkin, including the lid. Some will be left as is, some will have bas-relief circles around them, and some will have spirals curling out from the hole.
7. To create bas relief circles, first plan where you want them. Make the circles by drawing around a nickel or a quarter, and carve out the circle with the linoleum cutter.
8. For the spiral curls, place the linoleum carver at the hole and rotate the pumpkin in a circle, carving out an ever-increasing spiral.
9. Place a votive in the pumpkin.
Note: There must be sufficient oxygen for the candle to stay lit. If the candle wants to go out when the lid is on the pumpkin, you will need additional holes or a larger hole in the lid to increase airflow.