” THE GIREESH GV I KNOW” by Sanjog Sharan

Sanjog and I had worked together in many projects. This is what he wrote about me for my newly updated website, www.gireeshgv.in

with Sanjog in Jajpur, Odisha

Over two decades ago when we were young, sitting in Gireesh’s apartment near Gol Market in Delhi, I made a promise to him. Whenever the opportunity presents itself, I would seek the services of him, the ace photographer. Bearing witness were Sasi and Manoj Nair, his and mine closest friends and colleagues in Outlook. The magazine then bore imprint of the finest that Indian print journalism would offer, in design, visuals and content. The proverbial young energy in flow, with its editorial strengths emanating from the magisterial Vinod Mehta.

Gireesh is that fine light who shines through his camera. I would look forward to his credits and marvel at the controls he exhibited through his eyes over the shutter and the moment. For all the publications he has worked for. In this time I always look forward to his byline, well aware that both his individual snaps or a photo feature or within pages of a book, will leave me marvelling at his consistent, evolved feel for his art and craft, rigour and dedication.

Photo journalism often calls for a split, nano-second decision making of the subliminal moment where magic is present and may be recorded. Once the moment is gone the magic is lost. Forever. One thing that distinguishes Gireesh from his immediate tribe is the fact that he is a fine art student. His lensing and expressions are invariably sifted through an instinctive understanding of the frame and the composition within it. That is supremely aware of movement, colours, transience and then life itself. I was an admirer then and continue to be so now.

Having left the security of a fixed salary in 2000, I had started working as Karmic Design, a small firm with a proud, big heart. Initially the book assignments we worked on relied on visuals from the client themselves. In 2009-10 came the first opportunity where I could invite Gireesh to work on a monograph on which he was the principal photographer. Awakenings in BodhGaya was the culmination of our own pilgrimage to the site of Buddha’s enlightenment. Through each of the photograph that Gireesh carefully edited were borne elements that allowed us to forge a visual monograph rich and delicate, that elucidate all that is magnificent about BodhGaya.

Since then we have worked on a number of assignments together. On catalogs and books and theatre productions. In particular have come two books one on the heel of the other. First a book on Jajpur, the ancient capital of Odisha, and the second titled Beyond Barriers, a monograph that documents the indefatigable, splendid work of mobilisers, striving tirelessly for polio’s complete eradication in Western UP and in India at large. Both to us are marvelous well realised assignments that involve significant travel and rigour. In all our enterprise, me and Gireesh have worked well as a team which allow me to seek his company and natural born excellence. Always.

Gireesh likes to work alone on an assignment. As the book editor I have been relaxed enough for him to explore and capture moments solitary. For one because he would like to be out even before the crack of dawn. And then he works on till noon when the sun is up and the light become harsh and the shadows minimal. A brief rest later he is on his feet again to seek the outdoor and many a time he surprises me as he goes on to photograph till midnight. In the process he can climb several hills, walk long kilometers in deep cold and harsh heat, ill or not. Committed to the pressing deadlines and supreme performance. To top it all with heavy gear of a couple of cameras, multiple lenses, tripods and lights whenever required, which he insists on carrying himself. What he comes back is with great art, without fail.

Beyond the books on which we have worked together are the photographs he shoots for himself and keeps close to his chest or within his multiple hard drives. I am convinced I am yet to see some of his most profound works. However, in between we have worked on a maquette for a book of his titled Faith. For Gireesh is a traveller par excellence. Over time through his journey he has visited mosques, temples, gurudwaras, churches et al. He has captured moments of ecstasy, of solitude, of the divine and our dialog with creation and its magical overtures

From across India. Of faith that brings people together. That bridges divides and overcomes discrimination with ease, sophistication and finesse. Moments that are lit by grace, compassion and supreme trust in the often incomprehensible ways of the living reality. Often paradoxical and still, illuminated by beauty, subliminal. I personally would love to live for the day when this book of Gireesh, Faith, gets realised. Both as an exhibition and as a momentous coffee table book. I am convinced that the art project would be realised, apposite for the fractured, yet vital time we live in, soon. By Sanjog Sharan, Karmic Design.

with Sanjog Sharan in Ratnagiri,

wrist watch vendor

time lapses _© Gireesh GV

On many an idle day have I grieved over lost time.
But it is never lost, my lord.
Thou hast taken every moment of my life in thine own hands.

Hidden in the heart of things thou art nourishing seeds into sprouts,
buds into blossoms, and ripening flowers into fruitfulness.

I was tired and sleeping on my idle bed
and imagined all work had ceased.
In the morning I woke up
and found my garden full with wonders of flowers.

from Rabindranath Tagore

street vendor

Street Vendor, a boy who use to sell ‘refrigerated drinking water’ for Rs 2/- is now start selling soft drinks and bottled drinking water, near Rajiv Chowk metro station in New Delhi

Sushil Kumar


Sushil kumar is an Indian freestyle wrestler, instructing his disciples at his Akara (training school) in Delhi

Thakazhi with wife Katha


Thakazhi with wife Katha at his residence in Kuttanad, Allepey. Photographed him in 1995 for a magazine assignment.

Thakazhi Sivasankara Pillai (17 April 1912 – 10 April 1999) was a novelist and short story writer of Malayalam language. Born in the village of Thakazhi, in Kuttanad, Alappuzha district of Kerala,  He focused on the oppressed classes as the subject of his works, which are known for their attention to historic detail. He wrote several novels and over 600 short stories. His most famous works are Kayar (Coir, 1978) and Chemmeen (Prawns, 1956). Pillai, a recipient of the Padma Bhushan, was awarded India’s highest literary award, the Jnanpith in 1984 for the epic novel Kayar.



“Everyone has their own ways of expression. I believe we all have a lot to say, but finding ways to say it is more than half the battle.”  I like you  Criss Jami

Striking hard-Odisha


from the outskirts of Bhubaneswar, on our way to Balasore. Started drizziling and  the pitch  dark clouds made me more worry. its reminded me about 1999 super cyclone which badly hit entire coastal in Orissa. Apparently there was a cyclone warning and we were not aware. Roads are not crowded very few two wheelers, cars and trucks. We could see many workers walking dare in the rain as they coming back from the fields. we could see from the far there are variety of lightening strikes directly into the fields.  Next day I read the news ( Local news papers) about the causalities. There are 30 causalities reported in single day. The villagers work in the field who are worst affected and the village they live  has hardly any precautions. The deaths are happened due to a chain of strong lightening on Saturday afternoon, followed by heavy rainfall.

tall stone sculpture

thiruvalluvar_Gireesh GV

from the ferry boat on a monsoon day in Kanyakumari. The ferry from Kanyakumari to Vivekananda rock and Tiruvalluvar statue. A 133 feet tall statue installed in 2000.  The Tamil poet and philosopher Tiruvalluvar, author of the Thirukkural stand in the ocean,  where two seas and an ocean meet; the Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea, and the Indian Ocean.

worshiping Kshipra river

Ram Ghat-AA5_5211

Today is buddha purnima where Kshipra river got lots of importance, every 12 years this holy river been worshiped at Ujjain. Every 12 years , during the Kumbh Mela along the city’s elaborate riverside ghats, goddess Kshipra, which symbolizes purity and chastity, is worshipped by thousands and thousands of devotees

An ancient city situated on the eastern bank of the Kshipra River. Ujjain continues to be an important place of pilgrimage for Shaivites, Vaishnavites.Ram Ghat-AA5_5192

.Ujjain is in malwa region. Legend has it that once Lord Shiva went begging for alms, using the skull of Lord Brahma as the begging bowl. Nowhere in the three worlds did he manage to get any alms. Ultimately, he went to Vaikunth, or the abode of Lord Vishnu, and asked Lord Vishnu for alms. In return, Lord Vishnu showed Lord Shiva his index finger, which enraged the latter. Lord Shiva took out his trishool, or trident, and cut Lord Vishnu’s fingers. The Preserver’s fingers began to bleed profusely, and the blood accumulated in Brahma’s skull and soon overflowed from it. The flow became a stream and finally a river – the Kshipra