Things You'll Need
Cup of water
Styrofoam plate (optional)
Halloween decorations don't have to be scary. If you would rather have a decoration that is warm, friendly and festive, ditch the fangs and evil eyes and paint a cute face on your pumpkins. You don't need to be an art major; all you need are these tips for achieving an adorable look.
Wipe your pumpkin with a wet rag or paper towel to remove any dust or dirt. This will help your paint adhere better. Cover your working surface with newspaper and set your pumpkin in front of you. Lay out your marker, poster paints and brushes within easy reach, as well as a cup of water and paper towels for cleaning brushes between colors. If you like, you can use a Styrofoam plate to mix colors or to add white to colors to make them lighter.
Use a washable marker to draw an outline of the eyes, nose and mouth on your pumpkin. If you make a mistake, or don't like the way your pumpkin is looking, you can use some paper towel to wipe your pumpkin clean and start over. You don't have to draw in all the details as you will be painting over the marker. Just give yourself guidelines. Remember that every line or shape does not have to be perfect, as it is the imperfections that give the faces character and make them interesting.
Make cute eyes by making them big and expressive. Have them looking in different directions, crossed or you can even have one eye winking. Try making them round or oval instead of the traditional triangular shape. Slanting or slightly misshaping them will make them more interesting than perfectly symmetrical eyes. Don't forget lids, eyelashes or eyebrows to enhance the expression. When you choose colors for them, pick something bright, and paint the "whites" of the eyes either white or yellow to give the impression of a glowing jack-o'-lantern.
Little noses are often considered cuter than big noses. Make your cute pumpkin's little nose as a simple circle or a triangle, either right side up or inverted. If you want to get fancy, use a shape such as a tear drop, a cherry or a spider.
Make the mouth expression complement the eyes. Draw an "O"-shaped mouth to make your pumpkin look surprised or scared. A wavy line indicates confusion or silliness. Have a little pink tongue sticking out or some buck teeth. Of course, you can never go wrong with a big, toothy smile. To complement a smile, try smudging some round pink areas above the smile for the rosy cheeks.
When you begin painting your pumpkin, start filling in the colors first and allow them to dry for thirty minutes. As a final touch, take a fine paint brush dipped in black paint to draw outlines around all the features. Don't draw black outlines first, or the black will bleed into your other colors. The black outlines will make the features pop out against the orange flesh of the pumpkin.
Be creative. Make your pumpkin young, old, or resemble an animal. Add accessories such as hats, hair, glasses, an eye patch or set the pumpkin on a scarf. Make each one look distinctive with its own personality.
Keep your pumpkin dry. Rain or excessive moisture will cause the paint to melt and smear.