Artist Trading Card Swap (ATCs) – Six Word Stories

What are Six Letter Stories + Examples

As a writer and artist, a card swap that incorporates storytelling and art is right up my alley. The main objective for this swap is to create ‘a story told in only six words.’

One of the prime examples used to illustrate this task is Hemingway’s famous six-word tale: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.

Over the years, threads encouraging people to share their own six-word stories have blossomed on the likes of Reddit and Tumblr.

The Six Word Stories swap I participated in allowed artists to use mixed media materials, as opposed to just hand-drawing or hand-painting the cards.

Below, are the cards I created for the swap, and the ones that I received in return:

The Cards that I Made…

Six Word Stories - She Danced

She danced. Hoping he would notice.

Materials Used: Fine-point Sharpie pen, cut paper, pencil, colored pencil

I enjoy using Zentangle patterns to create dresses, as seen in this card. I wanted to depict the feeling that one has when they have a crush on someone who is oblivious to the fact.

 Six Word Stories - Sunrise

Birds chirp. Mother Nature awakens. Sunrise!

Materials Used: Fine-point Sharpie pen, glitter glue, cut paper, colored pencil

The tree and the bird feature a Zentangle pattern, which I paired with a gold glitter effect to signify the sparkling light that the rising sun creates.

Six Word Stories - All Cried Out

Red eyes. All cried out. Divorce!

Materials Used: Fine-point Sharpie pen, water color pencils, white gelly roll pen

I was watching a movie when I worked on this card, and as a result, arrived at the theme. The white gelly roll pen allowed me to create the tears.

Six Word Stories - Letter

Got a letter. Response? Not interested.

Materials Used: Fine-point Sharpie pen, cut paper, colored pencil, hole puncher

Whenever I can, I like using a hole puncher to create the look of a stamp with artist trading cards, so I specifically worked on a six-word story that allowed me to incorporate this technique.

The Cards that I Received…

In return, I received the following cards.

Six Word Stories - Dog

You wouldn’t believe what she did!

It’s funny that I got this card. We have a Chihuahua/Boston Terrier mix that gets into everything, so I can totally relate to its meaning, and love that a Boston is featured here.

Six Word Stories - Poison Apple

A poisoned apple nearly killed her.

I love fairy tales, and think the woman is just beautiful here. Also, you might not be able to tell from the photo, but the artist used a textured material that gives off the 3-D impression of snow.

Six Word Stories - Fairies

The little fairies all whispered together.

I’m a fan of fairies, and enjoyed the mixed media techniques used in this card.

What card(s) shown here do you like the best?

Can you come up with your own six-word story?

Six Word Stories Artist Trading Cards



23 thoughts on “Artist Trading Card Swap (ATCs) – Six Word Stories”

  1. I love how creative and colorful these cards are. It’s a great form of self expression and I love the fact that it conveys the message in six words.
    Toughcookiemommy recently posted…Stream Crystal Clear Sound With Chromecast Audio! @BestBuy @Chromecast #adMy Profile

  2. Kit Stanwood says:

    That’s so cool! It reminds me of those post card secrets that people do! So neat!

  3. Kiwi says:

    Now I am inspired. I want to do this I am super creative and I want to paint and do this ASAP!

  4. Amber Nelson says:

    Wow, those are so pretty. What an awesome job. I really like the dog one.
    Amber Nelson recently posted…Boost Your Baby’s Immune System, Ease Tummy Trouble With #UpSpringMy Profile

  5. Jean says:

    This is a really interesting concept and I like the fact that you give and recieve. It must be hard sometimes to come up with only 6 words, the pictures speak volumes.

  6. Chelsea Damon says:

    What a fun idea! it would be really fun to get involved in an artistic exchange like this one!!

  7. I’ve never heard of this before but I love the idea! I really like the first one you created.
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  8. Christine says:

    I am so glad you shared these examples. My mind wasn’t think that way for some reason. My favorite is the one with the dog. We have a dog like that and it is so true! My six word story would be. She came. She saw. She conquered.

    1. Yona Williams says:

      Thanks for sharing a six-word story, Christine! I like that one!

  9. Melissa says:

    This is such a unique idea and so much fun. Your artwork is so beautiful is it for sale anywhere?
    Melissa recently posted…Shop for Spring Wardrobe Essentials at TJMAXX.Com #FashionInYourFortiesMy Profile

    1. Yona Williams says:

      Thank you! I don’t currently sell any artwork…just trade with other artists for now.

  10. Tereza says:

    This is such an adorable little idea! I LOVE it! Would totally make for a little couples game too:) x

  11. Stephanie says:

    What an interesting idea, and a great way to flex the creative muscles.

  12. Meg says:

    What a fun thing to do. I think I will try it out. I love all the cards, fun using the different types of art.

  13. I loved the first one but they all speaking to me. I’m going to have to give this a try. Thank you for sharing, this is lovelyl.
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  14. Angela says:

    Such a great idea. My favourites are the one with the dog and the one with the fairies.

  15. Anna nuttall says:

    Aww what a cool idea. I like the first card ‘she danced, hoped he noticed’. This is very cleaver. xx
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  16. lisa says:

    Those are really pretty – very talented! The poisoned apple one is my favorite but I also really love the birds chirp one as well!

  17. OMG yours are so awesome, I think my favorite is the tree! And I love the puppy! This is such a great idea! I love the hemingway lines
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  18. Laura says:

    I love this!!! Did you use already published stories or do you manifest your own? I love this idea so much and would love to do one!

    1. Yona Williams says:

      Thanks Laura! The first four cards are my words and art.

      The last three are the cards I received from other artists.

  19. Theresa says:

    This is such a neat idea! I really like how they turned out. Very pretty.
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  20. Kindness in Demand says:

    These are so cool. I had never heard of this before. 6 words isn’t a lot, so it is super impressive that these artist can relay so much.

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