Latest update: May 31st, 2013
Our signature is the most practiced and utilized part of our handwriting, one we spend hours developing and perfecting to our satisfaction. And while, like any one aspect of handwriting, it does not portray the totality of the writer’s personality – any more than a doctor’s examination of an arm yields a full diagnosis of the body – our signature is nevertheless a very telling aspect of our writing, as it reveals a great deal of the persona of the writer and the image he wishes to project to the world.
If the writing and the signature are of the same size, style, slant, pressure and spacing – these are the facets of handwriting a graphologist or handwriting analyst examines – the writer is very comfortable with her public image and there is duality in the public and private image. She behaves the same in public as in private. She has no need for pretense or putting on airs – what you see is what you get.
If the signature is smaller than the writing, the writer lacks self-confidence, is shy, introverted, reserved, sensitive, and would rather forgo attention. If the signature is considerably smaller, the writer has psychological difficulties, or is a great pretender, standing off by himself, acting as if he wants no attention yet all the while craving it. It is a matter of extremes masking the opposite. Truly modest and humble individuals will have a handwriting and a signature that basically match.
If the signature is larger than the general handwriting, the writer is confident, determined, and forceful. When the signature is significantly larger than the handwriting, the writer can be selfish, overbearing, and pretentious.
While John McCain’s signature is somewhat larger than his handwriting, this is typical of politicians, actors, and others in the public eye. It is consistent of a healthy ego and the need for public recognition and even adoration.
The signature of Barack Obama, however, is much larger than his handwriting, indicating a need to put on airs. It is the writing of someone who can be extremely egotistical and dominating.
When the writing and signature are both clear and legible, the writer wants the message – as well as who he is – clearly understood. This is representative of the writing of both McCain and Obama: each wants his message to “come across” and for everyone to recognize and acknowledge the messenger.
If the handwriting is legible but the signature is not, the writer wants the communication to be clearly understood, but not who he is. When the writing is illegible but the signature is legible, the writer is not interested in communicating clearly other than to promote who he is (egotism to the max). When the writing and signature are both illegible, the writer has difficulty functioning.
When there is a large space between the text and the signature, the writer wants to distance himself from the message; he may not really endorse it or believe it. When the signature is close to the text, the writer wholeheartedly approves of the message. The signatures of Obama and McCain both are relatively close to the text. These quick signings are often done with little regard for the full identity of the recipient, but serve as a gift to an autograph hound or a minor campaign contributor.
The placement of the signature in the center indicates that the writer needs to be in the center of things. He do not want to be left out of anything. If someone is talking, he will assume it is about him. Barack Obama generally places his signature in the center.
Slightly left of center means the writer is natural, and unselfconscious; extreme left of center – not in a formal letter where the signature is customarily placed at the left – the writer is clinging to the past, afraid of facing the future, inhibited and lacking confidence. Right of center indicates one who moves confidently through life; extreme right means great impatience, frustration with bureaucracy, willfulness.
John McCain places his signature to the right, at times the extreme right. This indicates an inner temperament that is restless, impatient, can blow up in an instant, defies the given order – but that can, most often, exert control and mastery over inner demons.
The relationship between one’s given name and one’s family name indicates how one perceives his standing vis-à-vis the family. If the first and the last name are the same size, level, and closely spaced, it indicates a fine relationship with the family. If the first name is larger or placed higher than the last name, the writer feels superior to his family, that he achieved his status on his own.
If the family name is larger or placed higher, the reputation of the family is what he’s riding on and living off. If there is a wide space between the first name and the family name, it indicates a rift and distance between the writer and the family. When there is virtually no space between first name and family name and when they are connected, it indicates someone subsumed by the family.
The particular graphics in the Obama signature hint at symbolism both religious and tribal. His signature thus assumes the role of a veritable coat of arms.
About the Author: Dr. Ari Korenblit is a licensed psychotherapist in private practice, a graphologist/handwriting expert and a Supreme Court-certified document examiner. He can be contacted at 212-721-4608 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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