How to Make a Block Print Part 2: Printing

How to Make a Block Print with Speedball

Below you will find instructions for making prints with your hand-carved rubber block. For instructions on how to carve a linocut block, see How to Make a Linocut Print Part 1: Carving Your Block.

Your hand-carved rubber block
Block Printing Ink (I use Speedball brand)
Soft Rubber Brayer
Hard Rubber Brayer (Optional)
Ink Tray or Cookie Sheet
Printmaking Paper (I use 9×12″ for a 4×6″ block)
Metal Ruler

If you’re just getting started, this Printmaking Starter Kit has everything you need!


First, measure the paper your are printing on to ensure your piece is centered. If you are printing with a 4×6″ block on a 9×12″ sheet, leave 3 inches on either side, and 2.5 inches on the top and bottom. Use your pencil to make a tiny dot where each of the four corners of your print will be. You can erase them later.


Measuring your paper
Measuring your paper

Next, squeeze a small amount of paint onto your ink tray and roll it out with the soft rubber brayer. Use the brayer to apply a thin sheet of paint to your block.


Rolling your ink
Rolling your ink

Apply the block carefully to your paper by lining it up with the four corners you made earlier. It’s okay if it is not exact.

Apply pressure to all areas of the block to ensure paint is transferred. You can do this with a hard rubber brayer, or just use your hands.



Apply pressure with your hands to transfer the ink to your paper
Apply pressure with your hands to transfer the ink to your paper

Carefully lift up your block…


How to Make a Block Print with Speedball

…and enjoy your new one-of-a-kind print!


The final block print
The final block print

Published by Alex Hughes

I am a graphic designer from Dallas who loves printmaking, travel, illustration, soccer, and psychology.

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