Vinay Giridhar grew up in the south of India, in Kerala, a tropical paradise filled with green rice paddies and coconut groves. Amidst the rich culture of this land, he started drawing, painting, and writing stories. He always knew art was his element and feels blessed with a family who never forced him to choose engineering or medical school. After completing his Bachelor’s degree in Animation & Graphic Design he started his career as a visual artist and designer.
His love for storytelling drew him to Canada where he pursued the Classical Animation Diploma program at VFS. His grad film Love’s Age was selected as best class film, received the Paul Boyd Award and the VFS festival scholarship. The film screened at festivals worldwide including NFFTY and Hollyshorts; an Academy Award qualifying festival.
Life as an immigrant and a person of color in a foreign country was not always easy and finding employment was challenging. Destiny forced his hand and Vinay went back to school to study Digital Graphic Design where he found a new love for visual design and digital illustration.
More recently Vinay made his feature film directorial debut with Emergence: Out of the Shadows, a documentary on LGBTQ+ South Asians living in Metro Vancouver.
-Written by Varnnitha, spouse
Which ‘hood are you in?
I call the Newton neighbourhood of Surrey home. I love and enjoy living in this vibrant city, which is soon to overtake Vancouver to become the largest in BC. Surrey offers excellent parks, great restaurants, and plenty of stuff to do outside of work. I live in Newton with my lovely wife Varnnitha who is a data engineer by profession.
What do you do?
I currently work as an Art Director for one of the largest South Asian lifestyle print publications in Metro Vancouver. I create splashy print layouts, advertising, social media content including editing videos.
I also contribute to charitable organizations such as Sher Vancouver, PICS, and the Gujarati Society of BC.
What are you currently working on?
I recently ventured into a new medium, documentary filmmaking. Sher Vancouver’s founder Alex Sangha is one of my biggest supporters, and he granted me the opportunity to direct and edit his first feature documentary film Emergence: Out of the Shadows. This social impact film is currently making waves in the film festival circuit locally and internationally, including selections in Academy Award and Canadian Screen Award qualifying festivals. The film is receiving a very positive response from film critics and audiences, has even been recommended as “mandatory viewing” for high schools due to its potential to bring about real social change to reduce bullying, racism, homophobia, and transphobia. I hope to see positive changes happen in society by telling stories that matter.
Where can we find your work?
You can visit my personal website to get an idea of the kind of work I do.