Is there a term for this awkward stance used in group photos?

Anyhow, the pose does nothing to make them look less chubby.

Not how I do. I might clasp my hands behind my back, or just have them at my sides, or stick my thumbs in my pockets.

My take is that you often see this in a group photo of a bunch of straight men who are merely acquaintances (like co-workers as opposed to close friends) and who don’t want to get their hands and arms too close to the guy next to them so they are not perceived (in their mind, anyway) as being gay.

Thankfully, this attitude—which is rooted in homophobia and the fear of being perceived as gay—seems to be fading in the younger generation. But it hasn’t quite died out, particularly among those who grew up in the ‘70s and ‘80s when being called gay was just about the worst insult imaginable.

So we’re just going to make stuff up for FQ, then? Or do you have a cite? Nobody in those pictures grew up in the 70s.

There are some older photos of police in that Facebook group. Same area, but they weren’t doing the “fig leaf”. It seems like a newer convention.

See the picture here:

Surely, every member of the Being LGBTI in the Carribean (BLIC) group are not homophobic.

Well, I did actually say ‘70s and ‘80s, but on thinking about it I don’t think that homophobic attitudes died out overnight even then. I remember being on a submarine in the ‘90s and hearing how shocked and appalled some people were when Clinton announced his “Don’t ask; don’t tell” policy.

In any event, I agree that my response was merely my impression of the stance I saw in those photos and my experience with similar groups, like military and former military members. It may not have been the best response for FQ and I should have paid better attention to the forum it was posted in.

Surely not. But I see a difference in how the groups in the OP are standing as opposed to the BLIC group. The former are all standing apart from each other, with definite separation. The latter are generally much closer to each other, with bodies slightly rotated towards each other, and with many overlapping each other’s personal space.

Again, these are more of my impressions and may not be a good response for FQ. I would say that the FQ question was a fairly narrow one, merely asking if there was a special name for this phenomenon. The discussion seems to have moved on to why people stand that way in group photos.

I looked at w–a–y too many group photos.
Old and new photos of Olympic sports teams just kill me.
Either they’re funning it up or serious as a group of clergymen. But they always look proud.

Very interesting subject I had never thought of before.

@kayaker , what does holding the horse mean? I thought they meant actually holding a Horse by his halter or something.

Any phrase can by nasty if you put your mind to it. :horse:

Oooh! I see.

I don’t want to wrap my arms around people who are merely acquaintances. It’s got nothing to do with appearing to be gay – I’m happy to hug an actual close friend, whether they’re gay or not. I just usually don’t like being touched by people I’m not really close to.

Just to beat a dead … uh, whatever, I was making a lame joke referring to the first photo in the OP, where the horse guy is the only one not standing in the fig leaf pose (maybe the guy in the back too).

How about the awkward “non-actor normal person” stance in House Hunters — stand there with palms pressed flat against thighs.

When I’m in group photos, usually everyone has to crowd together, so we all stand at a slight angle, with arms out of the way, either to the side or behind our neighbor.

In less crowded group photos, it’s often “selfie style”, with just faces. Or everyone is around a table and their arms are… i have no idea, but not prominently in front.

I don’t think I’ve ever posed for a photo with the “fig leaf” pose, nor seen others do it in my presence.

This pose is often suggested by photographers for group photos.
By putting their hands together in front of their bodies, the people pull their shoulders in, so you can get them to stand closer to each other – this lets you get closer and still get them all in the picture. And a closer picture, showing more of their faces, is generally liked more by viewers. The clasping their hands together gives a more uniform look, makes the group more cohesive (and reduces the chance that someone will have their hands in weird positions when you snap the photo (or slyly giving a finger)).

Hands at your sides or clasped behind the back leaves the arms out and people will stand farther apart, forcing the photographer to move back. You can notice the difference that makes in those older photos.

Maybe it’s regional. I’ve literally never encountered it. And I’ve been in lots of photos of groups taken by professional photographers. Some quite recently.

This is my thought too. Not so much homophobia, as that group “holding hands” or even touching is more of a child thing. You don’t touch other people, (particularly if you don’t want HR involved) and particularly our culture doesn’t engage in general handholding by adults. It’s that “personal space” thing - it’s considered too personal/intimate. So people find a way to keep their hands away from their neighbour and their neighbour’s hands -clasping them either in front or behind their back. In front is better to avoid calls to HR.

Note the picture with the kids standing n the front row, they have their hands at their sides but are spaced apart far enough to not worry about touching their neighbour.

News to me. Whenever I am working at an event and we get a group photo in front of the step & repeat, everyone crowds together and puts their arms on others shoulders to get close.

It’s funny, last night when I had my photo taken solo at an event by default I started standing in that “fig leaf” pose. Then I thought of this thread and put them in my pocket instead, which looked much more casual.

For work events, we usually wrap our arms loosely behind the backs of nearby people, also to get close. The one thing the photographer usually tells groups I’m in is to stand slightly sideways, so we can get closer together.

Here’s are some Getty images of group photos. Very few of the people do the fig-leaf pose.

Sometimes this looks unfortunate: