As a general rule, don’t take pictures on set. Even if you’re not on Lost, the creators and studio execs, in agreement for once, probably don’t want you spoiling events/locations/casting new on your show.
Still, the self-imposed surveillance state we all live in now means that everyone has a camera attached to their cell phone. Or a texting machine attached to their camera, with occasional voice capabilities that don’t function all that well.1 Normal, everyday people take pictures at their work all the time, why shouldn’t you be allowed to?
For a very good reason that doesn’t involve arbitrary network rules or above-the-line vanity: your camera flash freaks out the electricians.
No, they’re not unfrozen cavemen, frightened by the bright lights and loud noises of our modern world.
No, the reason is, set lights flash brightly just before going out. Unless you’re looking directly at the camera when the flash goes off, the two flashes are indistinguishable.
If you absolutely have to take a picture (as the costume and make up departments do, for continuity photos), you should call out “flashing” before you take the picture. This lets the electricians know what’s going on. If you’re in a situation where you can’t shout, well… you probably shouldn’t be taking the picture at all. Just saying.
- Let’s be honest, it’s just a conveyance for Twitter and Instagram.↩