When it comes to pumpkin carving, Ray Villafane is the Michael Jordan, the Tiger Woods, the Edward Scissor Hands of his craft. Villafane’s Jack O’ Lanterns have mesmerized people for years, and they just keeps getting better.
Here are some of the best pumpkin sculptures / Jack O’ Lanterns, that Ray Villafane has created.
1. Shattered Jack O’ Lantern
“If you want to make a good pumpkin you have to push the limits” – Villafane
2. Pumpkin Carving Bullet
And Villafne will show you how to push your Jack O’ Lantern limits on his website, where he gives an extreme pumpkin carving tutorial.
3. Gourdanimo Jack O’ Lantern
“To me you carve a pumpkin to transform it into something that’s alive. I’m so obsessive, when I get into something, forget it, I don’t go to sleep. I stay up all night. I keep doing it.” – Villafane
4. Nail Bitter
Ray has been at his craft for more than fifteen years. He used to be a grade school teacher in Michigan, but now he sculpts full time.
5. Extreme Jack O’ Lantern
“The most important thing about a pumpkin is its weight. You need to pick the meatiest pumpkin. Sometimes I pick up a beautifully shaped pumpkin but when I do I realize that it is not heavy enough. Its wall is just not thick enough for the carving rigors.” – Villafane
6. Head inside a pumpkin
You can follow Villafane’s work on his Facebook page.
7. Jack-O-n’ Hide
“I used to be an art teacher at a Michigan school and one day I was approached to do some pumpkin carving. I thought why don’t I try and carve the pumpkin like it is a piece of clay as opposed to a large vegetable. It came out alright, but the most important result was that the kids at the school absolutely loved it. I used to arrive at school and there would be a dozen pumpkins just sitting there waiting for me at my classroom.” – Villafane
8. Extreme Jack O’ Lantern
“I also like a pumpkin with character. One with knobbly ridges is good, so that I can utilise that in the carving procedure, like with sculpting noses.” – Villafane
9. Pumpkin Brains
Ray has won the Food Network’s Challenge: Outrageous Pumpkins, twice.
10. Zipper Head Jack O’ Lantern
“The most intricate pumpkin model that I have designed is the Zipperhead model, which took the best part of a day. Otherwise, the models take a couple of hours.” – Villafane.
This is just a sampling of Ray’s work. You can see more extreme pumpkins at his website, and even learn how to carve your own. If that’s a little too extreme for you, Indyposted has some great Halloween pumpkin carving stencils.