Places, People and Visual Stories

Work is worship! so they say……

Whether 19 or 90, the people who excel are those who give everything to whatever they do.

In my journey of life, while on work, I have been very fortunate to have had the camera by my side to capture a great number of people, eminent and also commoners, who are always giving 200% in every aspect of their life. For each one of them, the cause is the almighty and their work is worship! And yes, for a few, worshiping is the work! Though I have been collating this collection, I realized the MAY DAY is apt, to pay tribute to the worker in us!

 
 

Our life is all about water and firewood kamshet, Lonavla
Our life is all about water and firewood. kamshet, Lonavla

 
 
 
 

“We are at our very best, and we are happiest, when we are fully engaged in work we enjoy on the journey toward the goal we’ve established for ourselves. It gives meaning to our time off and comfort to our sleep. It makes everything else in life so wonderful, so worthwhile.”
— Earl Nightingale

 
 

Balendu Datta, CISF, Silchar Airport
Balendu Datta, CISF, Silchar Airport

 
 
I was inspired by Balendu, when I noticed his affectionate interactions with every passenger while screening each one. In a matter of couple of hours he screened over two hundred fifty passengers, bending, sitting, turning and twisting over 1000 times! Still as cheerful as when the day began!
 
 
 
 
 

“Remember every job is a self-portrait of the person who did it. Autograph your work with excellence.”
— Anonymous

 
 
 
 
 

Kokila, feeding buffaloes, Pune
Kokila, feeding buffaloes, Pune

 
 
I have observed in the western part of India – Rajasthan, Gujarat and Maharasthra – a segment of citizens make it a point to feed any animal or a bird by buying a couple of fists of feed – fodder or grains. It is like a worship. By doing so, they believe that sins are washed away and they gain ‘punya’ (positive gains). Kokila is one among many women and men who bring the fodder as well as the cattle to the streets, so as to help people buy fodder to feed the cattle. In making this transaction happen, they also get paid.
 
 
 
 
 

“The best preparation for good work tomorrow is to do good work today.”
— Elbert Hubbard (Inspirational Writer)

 
 
 
 
 

Asif, chor bazaar, Mumbai
Asif, chor bazaar, Mumbai

 
 

Rehman, chor bazaar, Mumbai
Rehman, chor bazaar, Mumbai

 
 
You have to enter chor bazaar in Mumbai to figure out how the second hand market works. From swanky automobiles involved in accidents, to recycling of jeans, to trading in stripped house items and artefacts …. all happens here. Though most of the citizenry looks at this market with disdain, the workers here make sure the world is better place to live in – reuse, recycle and repair – everything under the sun!
 
 
 
 
 

“Good work habits help develop an internal toughness and a self-confident attitude that will sustain you through every adversity and temporary discouragement.” — Paul J. Fleyer

 
 
 
 
 

Krishnaswamy and accompanists, Minakshi Temple, Madurai
Krishnaswamy and accompanists, Minakshi Temple, Madurai

 
 
Krishnaswamy comes from a family that has been singing paeans to the lord at Madurai temple for nineteen generations. Every morning they start early morning at five and go on till eight.
 
 
 

Much good work is lost for the lack of a little more. ~Edward H. Harriman

 
 
 
 
 

The flourists, Kochin, India
The flourists, Kochin, India

 
 
 
 
 

Pullaiah, Farmer, Telangana, India
Pullaiah, Farmer, Telangana, India

 
 
 
 
 

God gives every bird its food, but He does not throw it into its nest. ~J.G. Holland

 
 
 
 
 

Ravinder, Electrical workshop, Vrindavan, India
Ravinder, Electrical workshop, Vrindavan, India

 
 
 
 
“The choice of a work community defines our lives and identities more powerfully than our choice of a suburb or a senator or even a house or a vacation destination. Yet many people look on a job only as a necessary evil, the unavoidable means of achieving a desired standard of living. They don’t expect principled management, just a generous paycheck. They don’t expect to get meaning and spiritual sustenance from a job, just to spend by far the greatest part of their waking hours working at it.” — Frederick F. Reichheld: The Loyalty Effect
 
 
 
 

Armed and paramilitary forces keep the nations secure, Jan 26 parade, Delhi
Armed and paramilitary forces keep the nations secure, Jan 26 parade, Delhi

 
 
 
 
 

The Bikshu Duo, Fort, Jaisalmer
The Bikshu Duo, Fort, Jaisalmer

 
 
 
 
 

The Rajput flautist, Fort, Jodhpur
The Rajput flautist, Fort, Jodhpur

 
 
 
 
 

“Happy is he who looks only into his work to know if it will succeed, never into the times or the public opinion; and who writes from the love of imparting certain thoughts and not from the necessity of sale—who writes always to the unknown friend.”
— Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) American author, poet, and philosopher

 
 
 
 
 

Farukhuddin Ali, Ajmer chisti, Rajasthan, India
Farukhuddin Ali, Ajmer chisti, Rajasthan, India

 
 
The septuagenarian Ali narrated the stories about how he used to go to the Rashtrapati darbar of Delhi in 1950s and 60s along with his grandfather and father who were revered by the powers to be in those days, for their expertise in making ‘ittar’. Fifty years since, he still sits in a small shop of ‘Ittar’ in Ajmer city next to the dargah!
 
 
 
 
 

Fishermen, Puri, Odisha, India
Fishermen, Puri, Odisha, India

 
 
Many a group of fishermen venture deep into the sea for over a couple of hundred nautical miles and lay a large net across a tens of yards. They then drag the nets all the way to the shore with long ropes. When their boat hits the shores, it is time to pull the long set of ropes to get the catch of the week! At times they venture into the sea so deep, that they take a few days to reach the shores again.
 
 
 
 
 

The one thing that matters is the effort. It continues, whereas the end to be attained is but an illusion of the climber, as he fares on and on from crest to crest; and once the goal is reached it has no meaning. ~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Wisdom of the Sands,

 
 
 
 
 

Guru Geeta Chandran, Danseuse and teacher, Bharatanatyam, Delhi
Guru Geeta Chandran, Danseuse and teacher, Bharatanatyam, Delhi

 
 
 
 

Subodh Raheja, solar light innovator, Manak Engineering, Noida, India
Subodh Raheja, solar light innovator, Manak Engineering, Noida, India

 
 
 
 
 
Any creative pursuit or research demands highest levels of rigour to help one excel. Most of the times, a dancers first solo performance, ‘Arangetram’ (entry on the stage), happens after a couple of decades of learning. Likewise a scientist pursuit gets rewarded after a few decades of focused work. And there are many who not only continue to excel, but also mentor and train many more to excel. That is the ultimate contribution to the physical and intellectual well being of the societies and communities.
 
 
 
 
 

 Men are made stronger on realization that the helping hand they need is at the end of their own arm. ~Sidney J. Phillips

 
 
 
 
 

A priest performs aarti to The Ganges, every morning at the sunrise, Varanasi, india
A priest performs aarti to The Ganges, every morning at the sunrise, Varanasi, india

 
 
 
 
 

The Halwai, sweatmeets maker, Allahabad, India
The Halwai, sweatmeets maker, Allahabad, India

 
 
 
 
 

The butcher, Srinagar, Kashmir, India
The butcher, Srinagar, Kashmir, India

 
 
 
 
 

“I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live.”
— George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

 
 
 
 
 

Balbir Singh, Night market, Goa, India
Balbir Singh, Night market, Goa, India

 
 
 
 
 

Have a break @ 19000 ft, Sikkim, India
Have a break @ 19000 ft, Sikkim, India

 
 
 
 
 

Nothing uncommon about it, daily wagers, markets, India
Nothing uncommon about it, daily wagers, markets, India

 
 
 
 
 

It is good to dream, but it is better to dream and work. Faith is mighty, but action with faith is mightier. Desiring is helpful, but work and desire are invincible.”
— Thomas Robert Gaines

 
 
 
 
 

Its no Joke! Puppetry, The team from Hunan, China
Its no Joke! Puppetry, The team from Hunan, China

 
 
 
 
 

When will we get all children into schools? Solan, HP
When will we get all children into schools? Solan, HP

 
 
 
 
 

“No person who is enthusiastic about his work has anything to fear from life. All the opportunities in the world are waiting to be grasped by people who are in love with what they’re doing.”
— Samuel Goldwyn (the “G” in MGM)

 
 
 

Rain or Heat, I have to earn. Bhimtal, Uttarakhand, India
Rain or Heat, I have to earn. Bhimtal, Uttarakhand, India

 
 
 
 
 

Peter Smetacek, Butterfly man of India, Uttarakhand
Peter Smetacek, Butterfly man of India, Uttarakhand

 
 
 

“Big jobs usually go to the men who prove their ability to outgrow small ones.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

 
 
 
 
 

Tugging along, sledge-man, Gulamarg, Kashmir
Tugging along, sledge-man, Gulamarg, Kashmir

 
 
 
 
 

Does age really matter? Turkman gate, Delhi
Does age really matter? Turkman gate, Delhi

 
 
 

“Diamonds are nothing more than chunks of coal that stuck to their jobs.” — Malcolm Forbes

 
 
 
 
 

Flood or drought, I have to make it happen, River Indravati, Chattisgarh
Flood or drought, I have to make it happen, River Indravati, Chattisgarh

 
 
 
 
 

Music or dance, we give you pleasure. Melacca, Malaysia
Music or dance, we give you pleasure. Melacca, Malaysia

 
 
 

He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run and climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying. ~Friedrich Nietzsche

 
 
 
 
 

Keeping our families secure back home - Dream Dubai, really?
Keeping our families secure back home – Dream Dubai, really?

 
 
 
 
 

The all weather shop, Leh, Ladakh
The all weather shop, Leh, Ladakh

 
 
 
 
 

“Always you have been told that work is a curse and labor; a misfortune. But I say to you that when you work you fulfill a part of earth’s furthest dream, assigned to you when that dream was born, and in keeping yourself with labor you are in truth loving life.” — Kahlil Gibran

 
 
 
 
 

Prof Anil Gupta, the innovation man of India. Mothihari, Bihar
Prof Anil Gupta, the innovation man of India. Mothihari, Bihar

 
 
 
 
 

Prof. Kiran Seth, the 'culture among youth champion'. SPICMACAY movement
Prof. Kiran Seth, the ‘culture among youth champion’. SPICMACAY movement

 
 
 
 
 

Raghu Rai, celebrated visual-documentar of India. Kohima
Raghu Rai, celebrated visual-documentar of India. Kohima

 
 
 

The Three mantras of worshiping that Albert Einstein used for work :

“Out of clutter, find Simplicity.”
“From discord, find Harmony.”
“In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”

“Work with others as much as possible. By working with others you tap into knowledge, strengths and new ways of looking at things. Focus on forming alliances that can work for you now and in the future. The more eyes, ears, and of course brains working on something, increase the odds of a favorable outcome. Being part of a team, lets each person bring their own particular strength to the issue, while having their individual ‘needs development’ area covered by someone else.”

— Edward W. Smith, Sixty Seconds To Success

“Stop fighting your creative spirit that is struggling to break free inside you. You will not be the person you were meant to be until you free this creative spirit and find ways to put it to use. Freeing your creative spirit will not send you into financial ruin or cause havoc with your life, if you acknowledge the creative side of you and find ways to gradually blend it into your thought process. What will happen is that you will find happiness you didn’t know existed and you will become the person you were meant to be.”

— Edward W. Smith, The One Minute Motivator

Like my Facebook – Photo and Visual arts Page
Visit the story stream on Flickr
 
 
———————————————————-
CURRENT EXHIBITIONS

– Indus Art Gallery, Campus – Indus World School of Business, Greater Noida

Display / Collections

– At my Alma mater : Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore

– Various schools of Indus World School chain

– Private collections

Recent Publications featuring my work and in Media [know more]

– The India Idea, Wisdom Tree publications for Ministry of External Affairs, Public diplomacy division, Aug 2011

– Penguin India, Top 5 “India through my Lens” 2011

– Femina Magazine, Anniversary issue, October 14, 2011

– Photographs featured with poetry in the book Hindustani Poems ‘Shayad, Yaheen kaheen se ho’ by Satya, April 27, 2012

41 responses

  1. anju sharma

    amazing!!!!!

    May 2, 2012 at 9:37 am

    • Thanks Anju for leaving your encouraging imprint!

      May 3, 2012 at 5:09 am

  2. Dear Vinay and Rishabh, thanks for visiting my photo blog and liking the story ‘work is worship’
    Regards

    May 2, 2012 at 10:20 am

  3. what a beautiful post! the photos, quotes and stories are so authentic and although it was hard to pick one my favourite quote is this one, and also inspirational to my ride!
    It is good to dream, but it is better to dream and work. Faith is mighty, but action with faith is mightier. Desiring is helpful, but work and desire are invincible.”
    — Thomas Robert Gaines

    May 3, 2012 at 5:31 am

    • Thanks Kasia for leaving your cycle imprint here too… wishing you the very best for your long pedaling! Love.

      May 3, 2012 at 5:40 am

  4. Thank you for stopping by my blog and giving time in commenting. Truly enjoyed your photo essay. Very inspiring..Will follow…All the best, Jenny

    May 3, 2012 at 12:23 pm

  5. The work you did to produce this post is amazing and then you shared with us. Speaking of sharing, I just shared this with my Facebook friends so they can be wowed by your work also.

    May 3, 2012 at 12:40 pm

    • Thanks for liking, giving feedback and sharing. will continue sharing.

      May 3, 2012 at 2:25 pm

  6. Ronald Puma

    Fine work, you travel a lot….greetings from the Netherlands.

    May 3, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    • Thanks Ronald for your visit and appreciation.

      May 3, 2012 at 3:58 pm

  7. Uplifting, encouraging and ensuring. Many thanks and blessings, Mr. Srinivasan! I needed this very positive focus today…I just learned my sister has to experience a mastectomy. You have given me a reminder that this lump of coal can become her diamond.

    May 3, 2012 at 8:12 pm

    • Thanks for all the positivity. Wishing your sister early recovery and a joyful life ahead. Love.

      May 4, 2012 at 12:51 am

  8. António Marques

    You have some great shots here.
    I would chose a wordpress theme that coul display them in a bigger size.
    Keep it up.

    May 3, 2012 at 10:09 pm

    • Thanks. I have been thinking about the bigger size one. Any suggestions. If I choose a bigger one does all the past posts remain intact? these are the thoughts.

      May 4, 2012 at 12:08 am

      • António Marques

        Some themes will update older post´s images automatically, provided the files you have uploaded are large enough, other themes won´t. I just have to try it.

        May 4, 2012 at 12:16 am

      • Thanks for your prompt reply. I am exploring right now.

        May 4, 2012 at 12:22 am

    • I have changed the templates and redesigned the whole thing. Kindly have a look and give feedback. Thanks to your prodding, I am sure things are looking better.

      May 6, 2012 at 4:41 pm

  9. Sir R Srinivasan every picture you frame tells a story. Your a master of street photography and photo journalism. I am very much convince with your work. I am now one of your loyal followers. Good day Nonoy Manga

    May 4, 2012 at 12:05 am

    • Thanks Nonoy Manga. We will share more and learn. Rgds.

      May 4, 2012 at 12:10 am

  10. Very nice photography and story telling from all over India.
    Blog makes me think about Steve McCurry.
    Congratulations! Keep up the good work.

    May 4, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    • Thanks for visiting and appreciating. I enjoyed going through you blog and I am following

      May 4, 2012 at 12:56 pm

  11. Another excellent post from you ! Like the images and your way of description.

    May 7, 2012 at 3:43 am

  12. Tunir Jain

    One has to say….
    You are a master. The photographs clicked by you have made ordinary situations look extraordinary compelling me to give a thought to life from a different angle altogether.

    I also followed your collection of Chawri Bazaar, Delhi taken early morning.

    Thank u so much for being there !!

    May 8, 2012 at 9:18 am

    • Thanks Tunir for your kind words of encouragement.

      May 8, 2012 at 10:50 am

  13. Awesome selection Srinivasan! Love them all!

    May 9, 2012 at 6:21 am

  14. Ronald Puma

    Do you know photographer Steve McCurry, he has a blog on WordPress too, with also photo’s of India. He is a true master.

    May 9, 2012 at 7:11 pm

    • Thanks Ronald. Yes! Steve is the Guru unparalleled. Keep sharing more such gurus. Love.

      May 11, 2012 at 6:43 am

  15. Work, any activity, at least 100% = a recipe for success. Your post way exceeds that. You’ve given us a great slice of life, cut out and served up to us complete with all the trimmings! Yes, I liked your photoessay Srinivasan, very much. Now I want to follow each of your subjects, and delve deeper into their lives. Or not. I’ll follow whatever you serve up to us.

    May 10, 2012 at 2:46 am

    • Dear TWLG, Thanks for visiting, commenting and following… I loved going through your blog too. A lot to learn. Love.

      May 11, 2012 at 6:50 am

      • There’s something for us to learn everywhere, isn’t there? So glad you came over for a peek. Hope to see you from time to time. 🙂

        May 11, 2012 at 7:06 am

  16. Great entry for this week theme my friend thanks for sharing 🙂

    May 15, 2012 at 9:33 pm

  17. Raghunath Singh

    Late to discover your blog. I have never seen anything like this before, these are all around you, but you never stop to appreciate the hardworking people. Great thought and greatly complimented with awesome pics.

    October 24, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    • Thanks Raghu for stopping by. It has been a while since I did any work on this blog. Humble thanks for waking me up and showing what one can do. Will restart. Love and regards.

      October 28, 2014 at 4:45 pm

  18. Aditya Gupta

    “Out of clutter, find Simplicity.”
    “From discord, find Harmony.”
    “In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”

    Srini…. once again you have impressed with your simplicity and being Harmonious through your photographs & thoughts….. Thanks for sharing such a wonderful blog.

    October 28, 2014 at 5:51 pm

    • Humble thanks Aditya. Blessings and wishes from each one on my journey adds so much to purpose and passion. Love.

      October 29, 2014 at 3:32 am

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