The camera department sets up and operates the film cameras used on the TV production. Camera operators will choose lenses, filters and settings in keeping with the director’s vision.  

Skills needed

  • Creativity and attention to detail
  • Understanding of lighting techniques
  • Strong technical knowledge of digital processes and camera equipment
  • Experience with camera operation
  • Knowledge of photography and the moving image
  • Physical coordination and stamina
  • Ability to give and to accept direction
  • Strong communication, particularly with cast and crew

Job Roles

  • Camera trainee
  • Video assist operator (VAO)
  • Data wrangler
  • Digital imaging technician (DIT)
  • Clapper loader
  • Focus puller
  • Script supervisor
  • Specialist camera operators (such as drone or marine)
  • Steadicam operator
  • Camera operator
  • Director of Photography (DoP)

Duties include

  • Assembling and setting up equipment 
  • Planning, preparing and rehearsing scenes
  • Working from scripts to determine camera direction
  • Creatively framing and capturing action
  • Liaising with lighting and technical staff
  • Finding solutions to technical or other practical problems

Useful Links

RTS Camera Masterclasses

Why storytelling is the key to good camerawork

Emmerdale DoP offers his camera tips

Behind the Camera Workshop

Lights, camera, action - the big names in broadcasting head to the Midlands for RTS Careers Fair

Ed Stafford: Treat the camera like your friend

How to become a news camera operator

Event report: Drones - The ultimate camera platform