Thursday, October 31, 2013

Dia de los Muertos Pumpkin, Step-by-Step

Hello again!
Here's how I did the Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos) pumpkin...
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I began by folding a piece of typing paper in half and cutting out

a simple skull shape. I folded it a little to fit the curve of the pumpkin

and lightly traced around the pattern with a liner brush,

then base-coated the skull background with white acrylic ~

(I used Golden Liquid Acrylic).

While that was drying, I sketched my design on the paper pattern,

this time cutting out the eyes, mouth and nose shapes.

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I placed the cut-out shapes on the pumpkin and used a liner brush

and pink acrylic (thinned) to trace around them...

(I used pink paint instead of black as it would be easier to blend into

the finished design ~ also easier to cover up any stray lines later.)

I used the brush to free-hand "sketch" in the different elements;

Swirls, flowers, hearts ~ the more the merrier!

It looks pretty messy at this stage...but it all comes together!
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I filled in the main shapes with bright, light to medium colors.
Now for the fun!
Using slightly thinned black acrylic and a liner brush, I outlined all the shapes ~
I then used a small round brush for the larger areas and the negative shapes around the eyes.
I got "dotty" with a brush handle dipped in various colors!
You could just go wild with details...I had to keep reminding myself that
this was just a (perishable) pumpkin!
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Even though it's not going to last all that long, I wanted the skull to have a

nice gloss, so I put a coat of water-based sealer on the painted design only.

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It's a good thing the sealer was dry, Leo!

He has to check everything out.

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Now, this part is really short-lived... (Aren't many really good things fleeting, though?)

but it was fun ~ I had oodles of marigolds, and they are such a significant part

of Dia de los Muertos that I had to do it.

Just a tiny bit of hot-glue holds each flower-head in place.

And they did last until the next day!

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Leo didn't know what to think about this part...;^)
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Leo does love to pose! (This is his "Lassie" look.)
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And that's it!

Join me for Halloween tomorrow night!




  1. WOW! It looks awesome! You are so talented! And, I love the pics of your adorable kitty checking it all out. So cute!

  2. This is brilliant. It is such a shame that it won't last long, at least you have pictures. It is good to see something a little different to the usual Jack-o-Lanterns.
    Leo looks like he is the quality controller, and is taking his job very seriously!

  3. Wow!
    I'm spechless!
    Happy Halloween!

  4. This is the best decorated pumpkin I've seen on the web anywhere!

  5. Incredible Anne! I thought this was on a foam pumpkin! All that work!!! And Leo is just adorable... love the look he is giving it in the marigold shot.

    Happy Halloween to you both!

  6. Such a transformation on your pumpkin and I agree, you are very talented.
    It's Leo approved....
    Happy Halloween.

  7. Your work is amazing. and that header with your sweet kitty OMGOSH could win a magazine contest. LOVE it all and will send this to my friend who dressed up kind of like that today . HUGS

  8. It's amazing! Pumpkins won't go bad here as long as one keeps the pumpkin in the house, and it is not carved. I still have a pumpkin from last year. I had it on a shelf in the living room, and it still looks fine.

    Is there a dry spot to display it?

  9. i would have so much fun making one of these. i hope i remember this next year! it's great and so different!

  10. Ah Anne - once again you have amazed me...your pumpkin is the best and Leo knows it. Wherever do you come up with these great ideas?? So fun too. Hope you had a wonderful birthday dear one! Take care and Happy Halloween!

  11. Happy Halloween/Day of the Dead, Anne! That is flipping awesome! I think Mr. Kitty Leo Cat approves as well. Your Pumpkin paint job is quite beautiful. Bright blessings, Bird.

  12. Oh my they are absolutely beautiful. The colors are fabulous. You are very talented!!!

  13. Amazing!! Love kitty in the pictures ;o) Big Hugs ;o)

  14. You are so clever! that looks just amazing! Jane xx


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