PUMPKIN carving is a serious business in Nicola Tarman's house.

The mum-of-two spends hours on each design she carefully scratches into the bright orange vegetables.

And each year she gets dozens of requests for intricate pictures to be carved ready for Halloween.

The 37-year-old from West Street, Harwich said her pumpkin passion started 12 years ago when she carved one for her son's first Halloween.

Since then the pictures and number of pumpkins she does has grown.

She said: "Over the last few years I've been asked by many people to carve pumpkins for them and I now do around 20 carvings a year for both myself and other people.

"I love doing them even though they take between one and four hours to do from start to finish.

"I started with a normal little face, then I started getting different templates as I got bored with the normal faces.

"It then started with a couple of faces at my mum's house as she recently had a hip replacement so couldn't do her own pumpkin.

"A friend then asked if I could do a Minecraft one or Hello Kitty

"I've got a professional carving kit now and I've got everyone asking."

Nicola, mum to 12-year-old Lewis and nine-year-old Aden, has carved everything from frightful witches to Minions on pumpkins.

She added: "The Michael Jackson from Thriller one I did is one of my favourites I've ever done.

"I got asked a lot when Frozen was big - I've done a lot of Elsa and Anna.

"I did a scary clown but that one got reported on Facebook."

Nicola's pumpkin carving sits well with her family's Halloween festivities.

She said: "My mum has always been mad on Halloween, she decorates the house with 200 to 300 decorations.

"I do one big pumpkin for us at home and the rest of Halloween is doing other people's."

But Nicola's creative flare is now crossing over to cakes, which she also decorates.