My London: Campbell Addy

 (ES Magazine)
(ES Magazine)

Home is?

Currently Peckham. I’m a south Londoner by birth — I grew up in Croydon. South London is where it’s at. Great clubs, great food, amazing nature, what more could one want?

What was your first job?

I was 12 and I’d get £2 to pack down a guy’s market stall in Croydon. My brother worked at the opposite stall. Then I did a paper round, but I didn’t have a bike so it was the longest job. I used to have my CD player with the Aaliyah album playing non-stop.

Where would you suggest for a first date?

I’ve been dating for the first time in my life actually, so I’ve been on some good — and some horrendous — first dates. I’m kind of basic, I’d go to an art gallery. I went on a fab first date to the Tate, it’s like going to the cinema but you’re able to talk to one another. You can have moments of cuteness — for me it works.

Do you have a favourite artwork in London?

I don’t know if it’s still in London, I haven’t been to Tate Britain in ages, but it would be No Woman, No Cry by Chris Ofili.

What shops do you rely on?

I couldn’t live here without Uniqlo. From the Heattech to the underwear and socks— I only wear Uniqlo socks — it just makes sense. When I go to places where there isn’t a Uniqlo I’m like, ‘Uhh, what do I do now?’

If you could buy any building and live there, which would it be?

I’d buy the Oxo Tower so I could look over the river, but if that was too much of a price crunch for me I’d buy a pub conversion in Elephant and Castle on Aylesbury Road —it’s the first place I lived in central London and I have lots of memories there.

Who is the most iconic Londoner?

My mind goes to Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell — as a duo. South London girls do it best. Oh, and the Spice Girls, too.

I got back from Ghana and the first thing I craved was beans on toast and a cup of tea at a local London caff

What are you up to for work?

My show called I Love Campbell, which debuts at 180 Studios. It’s an exploration of me loving myself in different mediums and vocations. I feel like I’m at uni again, it’s not about the Campbell Addy that’s online, it’s about exploring me and trusting myself.

Who is your professional hero?

James Barnor [the Ghanaian photographer]. He’s in his 90s but didn’t get recognition until he was in his 80s — he’s my hero because without him I wouldn’t exist.

Who haven’t you photographed but would like to?

Anok Yai. She’s incredible, she’s like my favourite super villain anime character. We’ve met multiple times and we’re always like, ‘Why haven’t we worked together?!’

What’s something special about London that you can’t find anywhere else?

I just got back from Ghana and the first thing I craved was beans on toast and a cup of tea. A nice local caff.

What one tip would you give to emerging photographers?

Take your time. Do things behind the scenes, not everything needs to be published. Find your language and when you feel like you have something to say, let the world know.

I Love Campbell, until 4 Jun, 180 Studios, 180 The Strand, WC2 (180studios.com)