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Painted (hi)stories

Creative project Factory

Key data

Techniques: Drawing, Painting
I can do alone: Yes
Required time: < 20 minutes
City: Home
Theme worlds: (Hi)stories, Text & Image


In books, stories are sometimes supplemented by images to make them more vivid. Stories are also hidden in many works of art. If you look closely, you might be able to decode them! But can stories be told with pictures alone?

Try it out yourself! The following tutorial shows you step by step how to tell your own story.

Instructions for making it yourself

You will need

  • 3 A4 sheets OR 5 equal sized papers or canvases
  • liquid colors
  • brushes
  • pens
  • scissors
  • glue stick
"For myself the past is the source (for all art is vitally contemporary)."

Cy Twombly


Step 1

Decide on a story you like or that happened to you.



You can also reference a historical event or myth.


Or watch this video and learn how to create your own story!


Watch the video and make a small book, called a leporello, for your story.

"When I work, I work very fast, but preparing to work can take up to a year. [...]"

Cy Twombly



Divide your story into about five sections and assign a feeling or mood to each section.


For each section, paint a picture that reflects the feeling or mood you chose.


Focus entirely on the colors and on applying the paint.


Think about characters for objects or people that are especially important in the story.


Paint or draw your story directly into the leporello or glue in the individual pictures afterwards.


Does art always have to represent something?

"Form interests me more than color. I usually take it in its primary meaning: Green for forest. Red for blood. Brown for earth."

Cy Twombly


Explained briefly

In abstract art, artists increasingly detach themselves from the actual object and instead use colors and shapes to express themselves. In Abstract Expressionism, color and the drawing and painting process take on even more importance. New painting techniques, an experimental application of color as well as spontaneity and chance become visible.

Work in pairs

Swap your paintings. You can choose from two possibilities:


Possibility 1:

What might the picture story be about? Write a new story or poem.

Then discuss the different stories!


Possibility 2:

Is there a character or motif that appears again and again in the pictures? Write a picture poem about this. This is a poem in which the text is arranged to make the outline of the motif.

Delve deeper

Artwork Factory

Artwork Cy Twombly, Lepanto Cycle, 2001

The “Lepanto” cycle is one of Cy Twombly’s major works and consists of twelve paintings that are exhibited permanently in a separate room at Museum Brandhorst. Vibrant hues in a broad palette of yellows, reds, turquoise and aquamarine define the drama of the monumental paintings. The action on the canvases intensifies, all the artist’s painting tools and painterly gestures are used expressively.

Delve deeper

Artist Factory

Artist Cy Twombly

was born in Lexington, Virginia, USA, in 1928 and died in Rome in 2011.