Embossing is a technique carried out on the reverse side of a plate placed on a very soft surface in which chisels, that come in various shapes and sizes, are used to form a raised design on the front of the metal sheet. By working on the reverse of the piece, the artist creates a three-dimensional design in relief.
The details of the design are refined and brought out on the front of the work (not on the reverse), using thinner chisels in order to obtain a detailed and accurate piece.
The final step entails the strengthening of the piece so that the design in relief is supported and will not change shape. Depending upon the nature of the metal used, strengthening can be achieved by hardening the work itself or by filling the voids on the reverse with malleable materials like wax, plaster or rubber that once cooled and hardened will help the raised design to maintain its shape.