Animated GIFs of ISWA Hands, Group 1, 2 and 3...

Valerie Sutton signwriting at MAC.COM
Mon Dec 1 00:00:13 UTC 2008

SignWriting List
November 30, 2008

Hello Everyone!

Adam Frost has created animated GIFs of the ISWA handshapes in Group  
1, Group 2 and Group 3...

Group 3 is around one-third completed...

Go to:

ISWA Animated GIFs Hands

And click on Groups 1, 2 and 3 to enjoy viewing Adam's animated  
handshapes with palm facing changes...

And you can move from one handshape to the next, using the navigation  
arrows on the top of each is fun to watch them in handshape after the other!

These are very useful...I am planning to add signs that use these  
handshapes, written in SignWriting, underneath the animated  
GIFs...some have some signs already...

Val ;-)


On Nov 30, 2008, at 10:13 AM, Adam Frost wrote:

> After some searching, I found the webpage with the GIF that I  
> created. It isn't preatty yet because there is still some working  
> being done, but it is here none the less.
> Adam
> On Nov 30, 2008, at 9:58 AM, Adam Frost wrote:
>> I love this question, and I will tell you why. It shows that you  
>> have a handle on these handshapes, and you are thinking in real  
>> world sense.
>> As a Lexiconian in the truest sense (I'd love to make an ASL  
>> equivalent to the Webster Dictionary, but that would be a life  
>> work. *wink*), I have made the same observations that you have just  
>> made. I have also noticed that it is rare for native users to  
>> realize that they have their hands the way that you have just  
>> described. This is the reason that the ASL Puddle, which is a  
>> collaborative dictionary, usually has the first set. The other  
>> reason is that most people can read the first set easier than the  
>> latter. ;-) The reason I mention this is if and when I were able to  
>> create and ASL Webster-like dictionary, then there would be  
>> something about this in the usage or pronunciation guide.
>> I know that I am not teaching your class, so I don't know the  
>> students. But if I were teaching a class that I felt could handle  
>> it, I would include both in the lessons and tell them that the  
>> first set is more of a novice way of signing as well as the visual  
>> image of how a native internally imagines their signing but are  
>> actually doing it the second way. The reason is in order to do the  
>> first set the elbow has to be in an awkward position or the wrist  
>> has to be painfully bent, whereas the latter set does not.
>> So now that I have rambled, I will answer your questions. :-) If  
>> you want to have those concepts in the ASL Puddle, you are more  
>> than welcome to add them. In fact, I think it is better to have  
>> both of them so that people can compare. As for your second  
>> question, I have been creating GIFs of all of the current  
>> handshapes. Because of everyone being swamped with so many  
>> projects, it is coming along very slowly. I have done these  
>> handshapes that you have mentioned, but I don't know if they have  
>> been put up on the website yet. I am not sure exactly why you are  
>> asking because you do understand it just fine. I am also surprised  
>> that there isn't anything about the latter set of handshapes on the  
>> website. I just find that odd. So I will check to see if my GIFs  
>> are on the website or not. If not, maybe I can figure something out.
>> Hope this helps, and I am glad that Val caught this in Digest  
>> because I never saw it. As always feel free to ask questions. It is  
>> the way to learn. ;-)
>> Adam
>> On Nov 30, 2008, at 9:03 AM, Valerie Sutton wrote:
>>> From: "Natasha Escalada-Westland" <shash90 at>
>>> Date: November 30, 2008 7:33:52 AM PST
>>> To: "SignWriting Listserve" <sw-l at>
>>> Subject: [sw-l] Handshape question, "Stand" and "Look"
>>> Reply-To: "SignWriting List" <sw-l at>
>>> Greetings SW colleagues,
>>> I am developing a lesson on teaching classifers and I am debating  
>>> which handshapes to use in my presentation.  The ASL signpuddle  
>>> dictionary cites:
>>> <symbol.php>   and   <symbol.php>   as the handshapes for "stand"  
>>> and "look-at" respectively.
>>> As I look at myself signing these, and as I think of using them as  
>>> classifiers to describe types or ways of standing or looking-at, I  
>>> see the following actual handshapes used:
>>> <symbol.php>  and  <symbol.php>
>>> The "Lessons in SignWriting Web Gallery" explanation of Handshape  
>>> group 2 doesn't include the above handsapes, although I do  
>>> understand them to mean index and middle fingers bent slightly at  
>>> the proximal knuckle.
>>> First question...  Do the signs in the ASL SignPuddle need to be  
>>> updated as written for these concepts?  To keep the fingers  
>>> straight requires unnatural lifting of the shoulder and elbow.
>>> Second question... is there an updated lesson book or handshape  
>>> list that includes the second set of handshapes somwhere on the  
>>> SignWriting website?
>>> Thank you!
>>> Natasha Escalada-Westland, M.Ed. (D/HH), Macromedia Cert.
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