Behind the cameras 

13 March 2023

Cover of Television & Radio 1979

From ‘Television & Radio 1979’, published by the Independent Broadcasting Authority in December 1978

When the credits roll at the end of a television programme the names of such key personnel as the producer, director and writers often accompany those of the artists and performers. However, there are many other talented people behind the scenes whose contributions may not be so obvious to the viewer – lighting electricians, for example, or vision mixers, researchers, editors and production assist ants, all of whom have an important role to play. A relatively straightforward chat show may involve around 50 or so people in the production and a more ambitious drama or light entertainment spectacular would require the services of a far greater number of staff.


Men sit at a control panel

Technicians at the telecine control panel in ITV’s Manchester studios. Here, images on 16mm and 35mm film are electronically scanned and converted into television pictures. granada


Filming from a tall crane

Staff working on outside broadcasts often need a head for heights! tyne tees


A man looks at a light meter

Before shooting commences, a member of the camera team takes a light measurement to help him calculate the correct lens aperture setting for optimum picture quality. atv


People film in a park

A small crew on location for the popular photography series Photography in Focus. Behind model Margaret Grant and stills photographer Stanley Matchett are (left to right) the sound recordist, director, film cameraman and production assistant. ulster


A man moving heavy boxes

A cameraman sets up his equipment for one of ITV’s many outside broadcasts which cover a wide variety of events from Saturday afternoon soccer to a networked church service. tyne tees


A man operates a film editing machine

A film editor prepares an item for a local news magazine programme. tyne tees


A woman applies make-up to a man

The make-up artist at work. thames


Robert Kee and a man holding a clapperboard

The clapper boy provides an audio and visual mark at the start of every film ‘take’ to assist synchronisation of picture and sound at the editing stage. yorkshire


You Say

3 responses to this article

Tim Westwater 6 May 2023 at 1:02 am

Recognise my father on the camera. Would love to see all the other cameramen producers directors soundmen etc. This was an amazing time in TV and I was privileged to grow up with it.. The best reporter that never gets a mention is Rod Griffith. My father Ian passed away 2015 and have plenty photos from his life and career… please let me know if I can make an input to your website. Regards Tim Westwater

Michael Quinn 14 August 2023 at 1:25 am

Is there footage of Bernard Youens as a continuity announcer before he played Stan Ogden?.

Russ J Graham 14 August 2023 at 10:42 am

It’s safe to assume that almost no footage exists of any black and white continuity. Those fragments that remain do so through fluke rather than by design.

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