Home > Cultural Poses
This is pic 1 of 4 about different poses in different cultures. This is in collaboration with Firestar who did the sketch art.
When posing for photos, people from Hawaii make the shaka, also known as the "hang loose sign."
This sign actually comes from the small village of La'ie where I used to live. A man named Kalili Hamana from La'ie lost three of his fingers in a sugar mill accident. After the local chapel burned down in the mid 20th Century, the local congregation of our church held luaus on Hukilau Beach to raise money to rebuild. They would bus tourists up from Honolulu. Kalili was one of the participants in the luau, and his waving with his pinky and thumb became iconic.
You can still see pictures of Kalili at the Polynesian Cultural Center in La'ie.
This picture of Tobermorey and his Hawaiian cousin, Iosepa, was taken on the BYU-Hawaii Campus in La'ie.
This is pic 2 of 4 about different poses in different cultures. This is in collaboration with Firestar who did the sketch art.
In Japan we hold up the index and middle fingers with the palm facing forward when posing for photos. Apparently, it's the peace sign, and some people even say "Piisu" which is a transliteration of the English word "peace" similar to how in the United States people say "Cheese" to evoke a smile when posing for a photo.
This picture of Tobermorey and his Japanese friend, Tanuko, was taken in front of the emperor's palace in Tokyo, Japan.
Tanuko-chan is a tanuki or Japanese "raccoon dog." Tanuki look similar to the raccoon found in North America but are a totally different animal. Their physical resemblance is completely superficial.
This is pic 3 of 4 about different poses in different cultures. This is in collaboration with Firestar who did the sketch art.
In the Deaf community in the United States, we sometimes sign, "I love you," when posing for photos.
This sign is occasionally confused by uninformed people for a gesture related to rock music, the occult, and a university in Texas, which gesture only has the index finger and pinky extended.
In contrast, the "ILY" hand shape from American Sign Language includes extending the thumb and denotes the three letters from the finger spelling alphabet I (made with the pinky extended), L (made with the index finger and thumb extended), and Y (made with the thumb and pinky extended), short for "I love you."
This picture of Tobermorey and his Deaf friend, Katie, was taken near Tillamook, Oregon.
This is pic 4 of 4 about different poses in different cultures. This is in collaboration with Firestar who did the sketch art.
Unlike the three previous pics in which Tobermorey demonstrates cultural hand gestures when posing for a photo in other cultures, this pose commonly used by visitors to Alaska incorporates the entire body.
Although the folding of the arms is optional, the essential elements of this pose include 1) shivering over the entire body, 2) clenching of teeth (often accompanied by chattering), and 3) a facial expression that is universally understood to convey the terror of the onset of frostbite.
This picture of Tobermorey and his cousin, Kenai, was taken in Anchorage, Alaska during an August heat wave
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