THE PALAU STORYBOARD AND OTHER LEGENDS
Storyboards were introduced into Palau by a Japanese artist during the Period of Palau governance by Japan by delegation from the League of Nations and adapted by the islanders to record their own traditions.
The stories that are told on the Palau storyboards are usually old Palauan legends
or alternatively legends from different islands especially Yap, Federated States of Micronesia.
The people of Palau have long been both good story tellers and skilful in woodcarving. As a result, the practice of telling stories through woodcarvings or storyboards is a natural extension. The storyboards themselves can be made from several good hard woods that are grown on Palau. The first of these is ironwood, or dort as it is known in the Palauan language. This is the preferred kind of wood as it is both strong and long lasting. If ironwood cannot be obtained either because it is not available or too expensive, imported woods are occasionally used for storyboards.
The construction of a storyboard may take some weeks to complete depending upon its size.
When the construction of the storyboard is complete, it will be finished by painting it with different colours or alternatively it will be treated so that the wood retains its natural colours. Tourists tend to prefer the painted board however the storyboards that retain the natural shades of the wood appear most attractive. With these, the wood is finished using black and brown shoe polish which causes it to shine and retain the true shades of the wood.