Body language is the physical output of our current state of mind, a mental and physical response to stimuli, and a non-verbal way of communicating. Although the numbers are still subject to debate, the general consensus is that more than two-thirds of human communication is in the form body language. Body language is particularly revealing within the fashion industry and it takes a keen eye from observers to interpret the meaning of a models body gestures.
AnOther's resident body language expert Dr Nicola Davies provides some insight into the body language of the audience at the spring/summer 2013 shows.
Both Vogue editors have a pleasing look on their faces, showing their teeth to emphasise their smiles. Hamish Bowles is clearly enjoying his chat with Anna Wintour. His hand, placed on his left cheek, indicates a feeling of satisfaction.
There appears to be an element of surprise or disappointment within this photo, the wide eyes indicating surprise and the hunched shoulders disappointment. The crossed legs and arms placed on top of each other suggest modesty and an effort to behave professionally.
The security guard is clearly interested in the woman photographer to his left, but while his gaze is blunt and seemingly unimpressed, the grasping of his hands indicates that he is curious about the woman’s gestures.
The man on the left has his torso leaning forward and his legs crossed, indicating a sense of security, possibly gained from the text message he appears to be reading. The man on the right is less relaxed and more business-like, by clasping his own phone and looking over the other man’s shoulder he is indicating that he too is expecting news.
These two women in the front row both show confidence, as well as an emotional closeness to one another. They are holding eye contact, their legs are pointing towards each other, and their feet are almost touching. They are comfortable with each other, which is in stark contrast to the defensive poses from people behind them who are crossing their arms.
These people are either watching or waiting for a show to start. They all have similar gestures, including strained faces that indicate a sense of either impatience or anticipation.
Tonne Goodman and Edward Enninful are enjoying an exciting conversation. Enninful’s raised right hand suggests that he is very open and welcoming, while Goodman’s arms surrounding Enninful’s body indicates that she is pleased to see him and wants to ensure he knows that.
Enninful and Goodman seem to have bumped into each other. Open-mouthed and wide-eyed, yet with subtle smiles, they are both surprised and yet amused and pleased. Indeed, they embrace rather than move backwards.
This scene suggests that Goodman and Enninful are about to part ways and go about their individual business. Enninful offers a friendly kiss goodbye and Goodman returns the favour. As with the previous two photos, their body language indicates pleasure, and even awe, when in the company of the other.
Text by Dr Nicola Davies