It was Mr Shreekanth Malushte one of my Gurus of Photography who first introduced me to Lord Ganesha at the Ganesh Gully Workshops ,, I began shooting the Lord on slide and BW and color roll ,,
After that I visited Ganesha Pandals shot Lord Ganesha on his throne ,, Visarjan time Mr Shreekanth Malushte bought us to his ancestral home at Girgaum and after a hearty Marath meal along with his son Himanshu Malushte bought us on the roads near Opera House to shoot the Ganeshas coming for immersion..and I only shot from the roads standing on the drums used as barriers by the Traffic Police and after shooting on film I would vend my home and it was here near Grant Road I met the Hijras with their Ganesha from Kamathipura , they were with their toyboys , some were drunk and I shot a lot of pictures now closed to public view .
And I also visited Heena a Hijra Queen of the Redlight Area at Pila House during the Ganesha festival and her guru was a Hindu Lakshmi not the celebrity .. I presented their Lord Ganesha a huge chunky Australian Quartz..
So I continued shooting Lord Ganesha year after year from the roads , there was an incident of the cops catching me shooting on the beach so I never ever shot or went near the Beach.
And than years later I was introduced to Lalbagh Chya Raja and I completely stopped going to Girgaum Chowpatty on the main visarjan day ,, for years I followed Lalbagh Chya Raja from Lalbagh till Do Tanki where the Muslims felicitate the Raja .
Than a few year back guys ripped open my satchel and robbed my money my cards even the cards on which I had shot the morning Arti at Lalbagh Chya Raja Pandal ,, and I stopped following the Raja last two or three years I shoot the Pandal the Arti and return home ,, also I walk barefeet and a leg injury made me stop the grueling walk..
This year after the Arti I would have returned home but thanks to my friend Vinay Parelkar a great innovative photographer , I came to Girgaum Chowpatty , caught up with him there and shot on the beach and in the waters ,, when the light began to fade I decided to return home ,,I did not want to shoot with flash or on a higher ISO./.
So in a way it was Lord Ganesha son of Shiva and Parvati who pushed me deep into the fathomless abyss of the camera ,, I have yet no surfaced ,, and the Cosmic Eye of Shiva does not let me drown fully.