Sculpting Clay


This type of clay is affordable and a popular choice, for example, air-dry clay. This means the clay is combined with water and when the water evaporates, the clay will dry and harden.

Water-Based Clay

These clays are made from clay minerals, oils, and waxes. These clays are best for those who want a long working time as they do not dry out.

Oil-Based Clay

This type of clay consists of natural clay with added materials. All kinds of clay are a form of ceramics, but not all ceramics consist of clay.

Ceramic Clay

This is exactly what the name implies, which is a clay that has added paper to its makeup. There are paper clay products you can purchase, or you can make your own from shredded newspaper, glue, and clay.

Paper Clay

This is the best used only by children and has basic ingredients including cornstarch, water, flour, oil, and cream of tartar.

Dough Clay


You can get anything from smooth to grainy, and coarse, with fine particles or less texture. This can also differ with each brand, so make sure to check before purchasing.


You do not want your sculpture to crack and break after all your hard work. Soft and pliable clay is easy to use, while stiffer or firmer clay can be challenging for beginners.

Strength and Pliability

Depending on the brand and types of sculpting clay, the prices can range from cheap to expensive.



Try to practice some of the sculpting techniques before you begin a project. Take out some clay and begin kneading and getting the feel of things.

Practice Your Techniques

Before you even start with your clay, you should put your idea and design down on paper. A good idea is to make sketches that are from various angles.

Create Your Design

An armature is a framework from which you are going to be working with your clay. This helps keep your clay sculpture from collapsing and holds it in form as you work.

Build an Armature

By looking at your sketches, you can then shape the clay into your basic form. You can then start with more detailed sculpting.

Shaping the Clay

Once you are done, the clay must cure or harden to protect the sculpture and maintain its shape and form. 

Curing the Clay

Once the sculpture has dried properly, the last thing to do is to put on a finish. You must decide if you want to color the clay, or do you want a more gloss finish?

Finishing Touches