The Road Map on the Back of Our Hands

July 15, 2013

“On the very backs of our hands, just under the skin, lie veins looking ever so much like little road maps, and as we age, those charts grow more pronounced as if to jog a memory of the journey we unceasingly undertake in our decision to continue to live.”
— William Least Heat Moon, Here, There, Elsewhere:  Stories from the Road

My Dad's 94-year-old hands

My Dad’s 94-year-old hands

Self-portrait of 59-year-old hand

Self-portrait of 59-year-old hand

Eyes may be the windows of the soul, but hands can be equally expressive and evocative.  I think that babies’ hands look like tiny sea stars.  But old hands reflect the character and experience of the passing years.





7 Responses to “The Road Map on the Back of Our Hands”

  1. Just beautiful Rosemary…I often gaze upon hands especially of loved ones….they express so much about the person.

    • Rosemary Says:

      I agree. It would be fun to take portraits of the hands of all my siblings to see the similarities and differences that run in a family.

  2. camilla wells paynter Says:

    I’ve always loved the vascularity of hands, especially as they grow older. It seems to convey both strength and vulnerability. Your image of babies’ hands as little sea stars is great–so apt, even the way they move!

  3. Judy Says:

    Someone mentioned my hands today–and I looked down on the age spots, the veins, the loose skin and thought, “Ugh”, but this lady was jealous of my hands–because I have long fingers. I guess we see in others something lovely that, in our own, looks less then that? I do look at hands–I can see in my children’s hands–their father’s in one, mine in another, a grandmother’s in another and my mother’s in another. Amazing. and of course, my Daddy’s hands that looked so like your Daddy’s.

  4. Pat Says:

    I am drawn to hands – I think I always have been. Very nice post. I posted hands of a farmer working in his garden that others seemed to really like. I just might need to look for more hands to photograph.

    • Rosemary Says:

      I often photograph hands and the backs of people’s heads and bodies just so that I don’t have to worry about model releases!! That’s part of e reason I’ve come to photograph hands quite often. But they are beautiful subjects in their own right.

  5. […] The Road Map on the Back of Our Hands, July 15, 2013 […]

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