Hands are more than just a useful part of the body.

Human hands helped to develop tools that pushed civilization forward. Our hands help us do everything from working and communicating to creating art and making music. Each hand can tell a story about a person's life.

That's exactly what photographer Omar Reda is showcasing in his new series, "Hands: The Story of Life," in which he explores the beauty found in the hands of people from all walks of life. Reda traveled across Tanzania, Ethiopia, Nepal, and Saudi Arabia to capture these portraits.


1. Like this beautifully detailed hand of a 3-year-old boy from the Masai Tribe in Africa.

All photos by Omar Reda.

2. This worn hand that belongs to a gardener.

3. And this hand that belongs to a mechanic.

4. This hand may be small, but it belongs to a woman who's worked many years on a farm.

5. These deeply wrinkled, calloused hands tell the story of an elderly tribal woman.

6. This skillful hand of a barber is covered in tiny hair clippings.

7.  A capable hand of a plumber.

8.  This seasoned hand of a baker.

9. This soldier's hand is covered in deep lines with a lifetime of stories to tell.

10. The sagely hand of a local holy man.

11. This calloused, worn, and stained hand tells the story of a blacksmith.

12. The ring-adorned hand of an elderly tribal man.

13. The confident and strong hand of a girl from a tribal village.

14. The competent, worn hand of a driver.

15. This carpenter whose experienced hand shows off a hard days work.

16. The clay covered hand of a potter perfecting their craft.

Each hand tells a unique story.  

These portraits of hands show that the beauty and richness of humanity can be glimpsed even in the simple lines on our hands.

"I am trying to capture the beauty of human hands around the world and from the different scope of life. People from tribes, villages, and cities," Reda explained of the series on his website.

What story do your hands tell?

You can see more of Omar Reda's work on Instagram and on his website.

This post was updated on 3/31/2017.

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