How to Create a Wood Block Printing Text Effect

Wood Block Print Text Vector Let’s go old school with recreating a time honored printing technique in Adobe Illustrator. With a modified photo texture, we’ll quickly edit any text to look like a wood block printing text effect, ready for whatever your digital needs may be!

Tutorial Details: Wood Block Printing Text Effect

Final Image: Wood Block Printing Text Effect

Wood Block Print Text Vector

Step 1: Wood Block Print Treatment

Starting with Adobe Photoshop and a wood or rust stock texture of your choice (I chose a couple from, Desaturate your image.
choose your texture

Step 2

Go to Image > Adjustments > Levels and set the input levels to 0, 0.18, and 122 and hit OK.

Step 3

Next, go to Image > Adjustments > Threshold and set the level to 181.
threshold level

Step 4

Export your file as a JPG and Import it into Adobe Illustrator. Open the Image Trace panel and set the Mode to Black and White and Threshold to 128, or so. Hit Trace.
image trace

Step 5

Go to Object > Expand and then Right-Click your newly expanded texture so you can Ungroup it. With the Magic Wand Tool, select the white portions of the texture and Delete them. Unite the black objects of the texture together in the Pathfinder panel.
Wood Block Print texture

Step 6

Using the Type Tool, write out the text of your choice and Convert to Outline. Unite the text objects in the Pathfinder panel and overlap the text with your texture.
overlap the text with the texture

Step 7

Select both objects and hit Intersect in Pathfinder.
intersect in pathfinder

Step 8

Set the newly textured text to the “ink” color of your choice. I chose red for this text effect.
ink color

Step 9

The texture I used above was a wood texture. Here’s an example of a rst texture having been used.
rst texture

Step 10

To complete your wood block printing text effect, you’ll need another instance of your original text outlines (from the start of Step 6). In the Appearance panel, apply a Gaussian Blur Effect with a 4.2 pixel radius and set the Opacity to 77%.
Blur effect

Conclusion: Wood Block Printing Text Effect

Place the second text instance below your text effect for a more realistic looking print. Try a textured background too to finish off the look. Think grain or paper when applying a light grain effect to a rectangle below your text.
Wood Block Printing Text Effect Final Image

Author: Mary Winkler

Mary works under the brand Acrylicana® designing apparel, jewelry, and illustrating for companies like Disney, Jakks Pacific, Envato, and more. Check out for more artwork, tutorials, and more.

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