Colored Pencil Pumpkins

For most of first semester it is fall and fall means pumpkins. So, if you are not experienced using colored pencils, pumpkins are a great way to practice blending. They are a simple shape, so you can focus your energy on the color.


  • Create a pumpkin that is interesting and uses the Principles of Design, specifically repetition and space.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of colored pencil blending through successful use of value.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of color theory through color choice.(selecting analogous colors and complementary for shading)
Check out this pumpkin from

But if you are going to draw only one pumpkin, it needs to be a show stopper like the one above. Maybe you want to draw a stack of pumpkins, look for some stock images for inspiration. Make sure you are looking at real pumpkins when you are drawing, though. Other people’s work is great for learning about color and techniques, but we don’t want to copy or steal from them.

Check out some of the resources below to get started:

Beginner colored pencil shading video:

Nice tutorials on different blending techniques:

Learning Standards   

Anchor Standard 1: Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work. VA:Cr1.1.I  a. Use multiple approaches to begin creative endeavors. VA:Cr1.2.III a. Choose from a range of materials and methods of traditional and contemporary artistic practices, following or breaking established conventions, to plan the making of multiple works of art and design based on a theme, idea, or concept.

 Anchor Standard 2: Organize and develop artistic ideas and work.    VA:Cr2.1.I a. Engage in making a work of art or design without having a preconceived plan.    VA:Cr2.1.II a. Through experimentation, practice, and persistence, demonstrate acquisition of skills and knowledge in a chosen art form.  VA:Cr2.2.I a. Explain how traditional and nontraditional materials may impact human health and the environment and demonstrate safe handling of materials, tools, and equipment.

Anchor Standard 3: Revise, refine, and complete artistic work.  VA:Cr3.1.II a. Engage in constructive critique with peers, then reflect on, reengage, revise, and refine works of art and design in response to personal artistic vision.

Anchor Standard 4: Select, analyze, and interpret artistic work for presentation.  a. Analyze, select, and curate artifacts or artworks for presentation and preservation.

Anchor Standard 8: Construct meaningful interpretations of artistic work.  a. Construct meaningful interpretations, supported by evidence, of an artwork or collection of works through describing and analyzing feelings, subject matter, formal characteristics, artmaking approaches, contextual information, and key concepts.