Place a flat-bottomed, long-stemmed pumpkin on several layers of newspaper. With a dark crayon or soft pencil, sketch a face on a well-rounded side. Position the mouth high enough so that the candle won’t be seen.
With a paring knife, cut out a beveled edge lid around the pumpkin stem. The opening should be large enough for your hand to pass through. Slice the stringy membrane from the lid.
Dig the seeds and membrane out of the inside of the pumpkin with a longhandled spoon.
Carve the face with a sharp knife, using sawing strokes rather than one continuous cut.
Place a candle in a glass holder in the bottom. Keep the pumpkin away from curtains or other flammable objects; don’t leave it unattended.