I have got a lovely craft for you today – how to make a no-carve mandala pumpkin! I really needed a break from tech today, so decided to put my artistic skills back to use and decorate a pumpkin with a mandala design. They look like they are really difficult to do (and don’t get me wrong, some designs probably are) but once you know how to break the pattern down, it is a lot easier than you think! So if you want to know how to decorate a pumpkin without any carving tools, keep reading…
I love the art of mandalas – the intricate detailing, and the repetition of the pattern is really pleasing to my eye. I love colouring them in too, and have got a couple of colouring books full of mandalas. But I have never drawn one myself – until today!
If you’re not following me on Instagram you have missed out today as I have been drawing mandalas on my Stories and Lives! Why not follow me now?! @MsPurplePumpkin (my personal, photography Insta) and @ThePurplePumpkinBlog (for my blog!).
The word “mandala” is from the classical Indian language of Sanskrit. Loosely translated to mean “circle,” a mandala is far more than a simple shape. It represents wholeness, and can be seen as a model for the organizational structure of life itself–a cosmic diagram that reminds us of our relation to the infinite, the world that extends both beyond and within our bodies and minds. – Mandala Project
I have to say that drawing mandalas today has been really therapeutic and calming. They took me a good hour to complete, and I was really lost in designing them. Given that they are a spiritual and ritual symbol in Hinduism and Buddhism, representing the universe (thank you Wiki) this feeling doesn’t surprise me.
The entry in Wikipedia goes on to say “In various spiritual traditions, mandalas may be employed for focusing attention of practitioners and adepts, as a spiritual guidance tool, for establishing a sacred space, and as a help to meditation and trance induction.” and I could see that happening. I was hyperfocused doing these – not so much when I was on video, as I was chatting to viewers and couldn’t concentrate as much. But off camera – I definitely felt like I was in a trance like state just me, the paper and pen.
At the top of this post I said how mandalas are easier to draw than you might think – it’s all about breaking down the sections, and repetition around the centre. You can be as simple or as detailed as you like with your mandala. The way I approached it was by drawing out the “petals” first, and then filling in the details afterwards.
When drawing a mandala you work around in a circle, copying each section all the way around. You could do this freehand, but it is so much easier using guidelines!
Of course, I’ve got a free printable mandala guideline sheet – download it here!
(right click and “save link as” – it’s a .jpg file which you can print direct from the image viewer on your computer. You may have to uncheck the “fit picture to frame” option)
Use the lines and the circles on the free printable to sketch out the petals – pointed, rounded, long, short – just see where your imagination takes you. You can then start filling in the sections however you like. I used online images for inspiration, but dots, lines, swirls and filled in sections seemed to feature a lot. I drew mine in pencil first and then went over in a marker pen.
Now of course if you use my printable you won’t be able to erase the guidelines – however the lines are a very feint grey, and by the time you outline with black (and colour in if you want) you won’t see them. Or you could use my guideline to draw your own out in pencil which you can then erase.
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Now all you have to do, is transfer all your knowledge of drawing a mandala on a sheet of paper onto a pumpkin! You have to work with the bumps and curves of the pumpkin – try to find an evenly rounded one – it’ll make things a lot easier! Or you could use a faux pumpkin!
I used a white pumpkin and a black marker pen. If you use a white pumpkin you could sketch out in pencil first (I kinda wish I did that – I only just thought about doing that as I type!) and then go over in pen. If you use a regular orange pumpkin, you could try using a white marker, or maybe silver?
You’ve got a ready made starting point with the stalk, so just start drawing out the petals, then fill in. I am still debating with myself whether to colour this in or not! What do you think?
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Printables created by The Purple Pumpkin Blog are for personal use only and not for resale. You are welcome to print my designs at a print shop if you don’t have a printer at home. If you wish to link to, pin or share my printables, you are welcome to do so as long as a link back to the blog post is shown and the watermarks are kept intact. Colours may vary slightly on printing due to different screen and printer settings. If you use any of my printables it would be awesome to know about it! Just leave me a comment, here on my blog, on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Pinterest! I hope you find them useful!