Cut a Hole
If you plan to illuminate your carved pumpkin with a battery-powered votive, use a keyhole saw to cut a hole in the base of the gourd. If you’d prefer to use a candle, remove the top of the pumpkin so smoke can escape.
Hollow Out the Pumpkin
Using a fleshing tool or a large metal spoon, scoop out the seeds and pulp. Make the inner walls thinner by scraping some of the flesh; this will allow more light to shine through the carved design.
Transfer the Template
Print the template and tape it to the pumpkin. Using a sharp awl or a pushpin, poke holes at close intervals around the design. Remove the template. If desired, connect holes with a pen or grease pencil to define the outline.
Carve the Creature
Using the holes (or pen line) as a guide, create the design’s outline with a narrow-blade linoleum cutter. Use a wider blade to remove flesh within the design. To carve in relief, etch the outline, then carve out the background.