Its one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, its another thing to make a portrait of who they are.

Paul Caponigro (*1932)
American photographer

This icebreaker Triple self-protrait falls under the category of guiding questions. Three of them to be precise, and three that lead deeply already. It can be used as remote icebreaker or as normal icebreaker in any given setting.

Procedure of Triple Self-Portrait

In case you use a conferencing software with a whiteboard you bring the triple self portrait to the online world: In 1960, Norman Rockwell (1894—1978), artist of the ‘Four Freedoms’, painted his ‘Triple Self-Portrait’ with good sense of humour and self-reflection. Let workshop participants paint and reflect on themselves by imitating this artwork with themselves as a model. A fun icebreaker with nonetheless quite some personal depth!


Self-presentation of participants with reflection and future as well as change-orientated. Thus, it is very suitable for change or dream workshops. It creates a positive atmosphere.


The triple self-portrait helps to understand and guide the questions. It is also more memorizable. However, it is not absolutely required. In offline workshops you can hand it out a copy of Rockwell’s painting along with the questions.

During online events you can easily display at the screen along with the questions.


  1. Describe who you are (looking in the mirror)! 
  2. Describe what others see in you (looking at the artist’s back)!
  3. Describe who you want to be (projection on the canvas)! 


Be careful with your time calculation. If you allow 1 minute per question, you end up with 3 min per participants. In case of 12 participants (3×12 = 36) plus introduction and transition time you are between 40 to 45 min.


Forming. It’s an Icebreaker.

You might also consider these icebreakers for your online event:

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