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Ray Villafane brings “Predator,” “Child’s Play” and many others to life in pumpkin masterpieces

Ray Villafane brings “Predator,” “Child’s Play” and many others to life in pumpkin masterpieces (photo)

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If you’re a fan of comic book action figures, you probably know who Ray Villafane is even if you don’t recognize his name. The 42-year-old Arizona native earns his weekly paychecks by sculpting wax prototypes of toys and action figures for companies like DC Comics. But every year come fall, Villafane becomes known for something a bit more festive.

Along with his gift for working with clay, the sculptor makes a yearly tradition of creating masterpieces out of pumpkins every Halloween. The Wall Street Journal, who were duly impressed by Villafane’s skills, caught up with the sculptor to talk to him about his pumpkin carving endeavors.

“I like carving pumpkins for the same reason people who enjoy looking at them enjoy looking at them. I experience the same enjoyment that they do. It hasn’t lost that appeal to me yet,” he explained.

Villafane doesn’t typically go into pumpkin designing with a clear idea in mind. Sometimes he sketches an outline on the gourd to give him the right idea, but sometimes all it takes is a malformed section of the pumpkin or a shadow hitting it in the right way to give him inspiration. In the video above, Villafane designed a giant ogre-shaped pumpkin and one that has a notch for him to put his fist so it looks like he’s punching it in the face.


“The fact that pumpkins are temporary art is an added bonus. It’s kind of like that holiday dessert that you only have once a year,” Villafane explained about his attraction to the art. “Your memories of it are really heightened and you become more emotionally attached to it.”


Does Villafane’s carved pumpkin put the one on your doorstep to shame? Tell us in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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