First, you have to choose your victim. This is incredibly important. You have to examine your blank canvas at length. If you choose one too lopsided, you may have to start over and oh, what a waste… To take a life and then not even use it? However, once you find the perfect one, you’ll know. It will be as if your body is pulled toward it, like a magnet.
Second, what type of look are you going for? This is almost as important as picking it out! Do you want to go cute? Maybe spooky (it is the season!)? Gross? Terrifying? Stick to one thing though, at least to start with. You’re just a beginner! No need to make things complicated your first time around.
Third, what ARE you carving? Once you have the theme down, you should get your pattern down. You should start with something basic. There are plenty of patterns but your basic ones should be easy to find. Someday, you might be so advanced that you can free hand! That is the dream, isn’t it?
Fourth, make sure to choose your art space very carefully. You want to make sure that you’re in a safe space where you feel protected. If this space isn’t easy to clean, be sure to put down some plastic wrap to catch all the falling guts and insides. No one likes to find guts in the carpet days later! Think about that terrible smell!
Fifth, tying this in with the above, make sure that you either hate the clothes you’re wearing or you cover-up! There are some stains that simply don’t wash out. You should either completely throw these clothes away or cover them up!
Sixth, sharpen those knives! This might be the most important step. I just can’t tell you the amount of times I started sawing through one of these suckers with a dull knife. Your arm will be sore for days and your carving will not turn out as clean. Then you might have to just throw it all away and start again. Oh, what a waste.
Seventh, you’re ready to carve! Enjoy yourself, especially your first time. There’s really no comparison with the first time. You might be nervous (and that’s perfectly normal) but trust me, you’ll look back on this moment fondly. Just remember to clean up after yourself very well. Guts like to hide in the nooks and crannies of your carving space.
Pro-Tip: This isn’t for everyone but you can cook some of the insides for a delicious snack later on! It helps you to remember how perfect the moment was too. Besides, who doesn’t love pumpkin pie?