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Printing Texture onto Moist Clay


Printing is a very popular art form that is perfect for creating repeating patterns, images and designs. Printmaking techniques can easily be transferred into working with clay with the help of AMACO® Balsa-Foam® and AMACO® Underglazes, along with the many tools you already have in your classroom. This technique is the third in our lesson plan on printing and embossing with underglazes.


  1. Balsa Foam
  2. Pencil
  3. Hardwood Modeling Tools
  4. AMACO Ceramic Clay


Lightly sketch a design or image onto the Balsa-Foam® block using a soft pencil.


Carve the design into the Balsa-Foam® along the pencil lines by using wooden or carving tools. Carve different levels for more interest. Be sure not to carve any undercuts.

Press block into clay

Roll out a slab of clay about 1/4" thick and press the Balsa-Foam® texture block into it.

Or press clay into block

If using the more fragile Balsa-Foam® Soft Density for stamping, lay the block texture-side-up on the table, and then gently press the clay into the Balsa-Foam® with the palm or by using a small roller.


Apply equal pressure to the edges of the block before gently pulling it away from the clay. Allow to fire completely before firing.