I understand and agree with what you all are saying. I know the whole business expense thing. I have a deck cleaning business. But to me, and maybe this is just me, but a picasso is only worth the paint, the frame it's in and how much I like the image. The name means nothing to me. That's just us being programmed to like things that people tell you is great or valuable. Unless someone tells me, I'm not going to know difference between a picasso and a painting done by a monkey. If no one sees any other pumpkins but mine, they think they are the freaking coolest things they've ever seen and will pay more, but that doesn't make them worth more. They just never saw another pumpkin to compare it to, so mine is the picasso. Most times the buyer has no clue if it's a A+ product or not. Michaels pumpkins were not A+ this year but we all still bought them. Since quality matters so much on these carves, which it most def. should, they shouldn't allow you to send pictures into pumpkin carving contests. I know my camera settings make a world of difference. NO offense DOH.
I have no problem with you all using each others patterns either. Share the love and carvings with whoever enjoys them. It's really not about the money. It's about seeing people enjoy what you created for them. If StOney, Doh, Looney, pumpkingeek and 10 other "expert" carvers carved the same pattern, who really decides which one is "better" and should cost more? Some are going to like more detail and some may not.
Bottom line, if this is your business, charge as much as someone is willing to pay. It's the American way. Have a little kid in China carve it for you. Labor will be a lot cheaper. LOL.