Have you ever wonder why some people flash a "V" sign when their pictures are taken? Check out the people you see above and then tell me what is the one thing in common?
Yes. The V sign but when and where did it started and why?
Well there is no definite answer for that but if you go back in time, you will probably know why.
At the height of the Vietnam War, the hippie and counterculture movement, and US government scandals, the trendsetting symbol of any opposition to the existing social order and conservative mores was the peace sign. Borrowed from the popular and iconic symbolism of Prime Minister Winston Churchill during the dark years of World War II, the V sign made a comeback as the way people pose in front of the camera.
Showing the V is not just showing your advocacy for world peace or social change but something to show yourself to the world that you're young, hip individual that has everything going at you. Jumping into the picture is the Japanese kawaii culture that puts cuteness into something like an identifying feature of being youthful and carefree. Although it could mean victory especially in the countries involved in the so-called Arab Spring or defiance as shown by the then-outgoing US President Richard Nixon. Australians, Kiwis, South Africans, Irish, and even the British may probably get offended by this as it may mean as the middle finger and the "F-bomb" combined.
Actually, there are variants of the V sign pose depending upon what you want to express and how you want to be seen. Posing with it may conjure different meaning so it all depends upon the eye of the beholder.
This is the most common way of showing how you want to be on the spotlight. Showing with your palm facing outwards was popularized by the Japanese especially when posing for goofy and "for fun" photos. It was said to be taken out of context when American figure skater Janet Lynn flirted with Japanese pop culture during the 1972 Winter Olympics in Sapporo. During a free-skating event, Lynn stumbled but continued to skate with a smile even if she fall on her back to the ice. Even though she got the bronze medal, her perseverance made her an overnight Japanese celebrity. A gaijin was credited for this phenomena but nationalists have put actor-singer Jun Inoue as person who started it all as he starred in a Konica commercial in the same year.
V is not the sign for vendetta because people are attributing it to someone that is posing like a kawaii or in Tagalog, "nagpapacute." Douchebags, wannabe rap stars, and Justin Bieber do it this way. While people who want to emphasize some part of their body may put the V sign rite beside the eyes, lips, or face.
Double V Whammy
Being an overused pose, people tend to make variances to make themselves look "cool" so how about using the V two times ala Pulp Fiction? Well, it doesn't get any better than that. Give it a try!
Whatever pose we do, its all about enjoying what we do and showing our beautiful smile in front of the camera. When the photographer counts down before snaps the button and the shutter sounds, a successful photograph is taken thereby freezing a moment in time where you just stand still and your pose express your emotion and of course, your V sign.
To learn more about the common poses, check out www.asianposes.com for more information.