Skip to main content


Primroses in Ruskin Park

It has been a while since I posted in my Camberwell Life series and it was about time I got down to the Green with a decent camera. I have been working with an old Lumix MFT body – the GH3 – to do some street and “hobby” work, as well as for my recent mountaineering images. I will come back to the technical stuff at the end – this post is for South London locals and is really for fun.

Today was a glorious spring day here and I just wanted to get out and photograph blossom. I did that, but ended up having more conversations on the street than I have ever had before. I came back home with a big smile on my face, just from the joy of the sunshine and of meeting people!

Signs of Spring… blossom and other flowers everywhere!

Sarah suggested that I should see how the Saturday Camberwell Farmers’ Market was doing, down on the Green. The market has in the past occasionally seemed to be a little bedraggled, with not enough stalls or footfall. Not so yesterday. I thought that there was a decent range of prodicts on offer, and a good buzz as people wandered through. It would be good to see Camberwell Market flourish even more – there is no lack of room down that side of the Green.

My stroll down to Camberwell Green passed the recently repurposed and renamed Grove Lane Deli. Spring was visible here in the shape of customers enjoing coffee on the pavement outside – with the first outdoor backgammon game I have seen this year. Is this now the Camberwell equivalent of the first cuckoo in Spring?! Thanks to Dionysis for permission to photograph.

Is there a dish more photogenic than paella? The great steaming pans of bright rice and seafood always attract. First stall in on the left when I arrived was Tapas Bravas – paella and tapas.

Down towards the end of the market was “Ruby’s Reads” – a lovely selection of children’s books with a few toys thrown in. If you are looking for books at a good range of reading levels – books which celebrate multicultural heritage and difference – then it is worth talking to Ruby and Nadia. They are regulars at Camberwell Urban Farmers’ Market.

It was good also to talk with Salome, the UK face of Gifted Hands Africa, who bring handcrafts from a group of single mums (mainly) in Uganda to the UK market. Vibrant colours and textures!

Bisi Akinola-Arutoghor is Angelica Poems – represented by a stall of books, jewellery and wall-art which reflect this lady’s Nigerian roots.

How do you bring modern agricultural practices and Western organic farming standards to Africa? And how do you make sure that an increasing share of the profits generated stay on that continent? Subjects to chew over with the founder of “The Life of a Tree” – a firm bringing Moringa leaves and other products to the UK.

It is hard to pick out all the stalls, of course! The big Marsh Produce stall was bustling every time I went past, so there would have been too many permissions to seek to get a good photo! The guy on the burger stall for Strawberry NutNuts was happy to be photographed, though. I loved the textured marbling of the handmade soaps on the Wix Candles stall. The display of artisan bread from Breadwinners was mouthwatering – and this business is a great one to support as it provides training and useful work for refugees and asylum seekers in London and Brighton. And finally, a brief use of my (two) words of Polish with Roka of the flower stall at the market entrance. She was doing a roaring trade – of course she was, the day before Mothers’ Day!

On my way up to Ruskin Park I grabbed pics of a number of a few familiar things: the rainbow flag in the window of the Sexual Health Clinic; plastic flower displays;  Love Walk cafe, brimming with customers for brunch on such a morning; a bus with a slightly unusual paint job. The guy who often preaches very loudly outside the Golden Grill seems to have been moved onto the Green. I think as a result, he has turned his megaphone up – you can hear every word a hundred metres away!  Two ladies with him hand out tracts on the pavement.

Further up Denmark Hill there was also a small but enthusiastic demonstration outside the Maudsley: The Citizens Commission on Human Rights campaigning against the use of electro-convulsive therapy. On closer inspection of their leaflet I see that they are an arm of the church of Scientology – not my favourite, though I am inclined to agree with them on this particular issue.

One final shot from Ruskin Park to show that spring has come – the bald sunbather is out and about!

All shots taken with the Lumix GH3 and one of three lenses: LUMIX G VARIO 12-32/F3.5-5.6; LUMIX G VARIO 45-200/F4.0-5.6II and the Samyang 7.5mm Fisheye. I am finding that this set up can pack down into one small bag, and yet, given decent light, can handle many kinds of shot. The light in some of the market stalls was far from ideal, but I think that between the GH3 and Photoshop, the results are impressive! This is the not the equipment I use as a wedding photographer, but for my “hobby” photography I am very pleased with it.

Photos from one walk with the Lumix GH3 © copyright Andrew King Photography

If you would like any of them – printed or for sharing – just contact me and it can be arranged. Equally, if you object to any of them, just say, and they come down!

Leave a Reply