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23 / 06 / 2020

Post Covid-19 Lockdown Shooting

written by
Georgia Butler


Getting Back On Set... Post Covid-19 Lockdown Shooting


Models Tracey Lushington and Tommy Viles have been back on set recently shooting for Hihi, so we caught up with them to see what it was like being back on set, what you can expect and how they found the experience! Tommy attended a studio for his shoot, and Tracey a location house, we loved hearing their experiences and how the sets were set up to accomodate social distancing and follow guidelines. 



What procedures were put in place to ensure the safety of everyone on set?

Tracey: Prior to the shoot I was sent a 10 page document regarding the Covid-19 Guidelines that were in place and everyone involved on the shoot day was required to sign a health declaration form which I found very reassuring.  Also, the director called me a few days before to answer any queries / concerns I may have had. I had worked with the production company a couple of times last year so I knew they were highly professional.

Tommy: We were all asked to stay two metres apart, there was lots of signage dotted around reminding us of the risks, there was anti-bacterial hand gel bottles every 10 metres or so, and we were given masks upon site entry.  Talents also had self isolation booths in the waiting area before we were called to set.


What did your day look like from start to finish on set?

Tracey: I drove myself to set and was told the previous day where I should park. On arrival I had my temperature checked by a medic. Coffee & breakfast were available outside and chairs were set out 2 metres apart. Everyone involved in the shoot was wearing a face mask at all times. Before entering the house I was given a mask & there was a hand sanitising station. Inside the house I was shown the one way system to walk to set, ensuring nobody crossed paths. A room was set aside to get changed in and my wardrobe had already been chosen. I was shown to an upstairs bedroom to finish hair & make up (although I had pretty much completed this before leaving home.) Once on set, the director, DOP and only necessary crew were present. Any props used were wiped down between takes. The client/agency were watching on a monitor in the back garden. I was offered alcohol wipes between shots & I always replaced my mask. I was wrapped just 2 hours later! I changed back into my own clothes and drove home.

Tommy: I arrived at the shoot by a car booked by client which was a nice perk and very safety-conscious).  I was greeted by a health and safety official, who explained the process. I was then given gloves, masks and make-up for self prep and escorted to a self isolation unit.


Is there anything that you preferred on this shoot to a Pre-Covid 19 shoot?

Tracey: It was much quicker than normal and I felt that it was more decisive in every respect - wardrobe, action, set dressing etc...
I was definitely only there for the duration I was needed to be... or maybe they just wanted to get rid of me! Ha!

Tommy: The crew were exceptionally patient and caring. A lot of effort was made to ensure I felt comfortable at all times and they really appreciated my time as a key part of the process.


How did it feel to go back to work after such a long time off?

Tracey: Fantastic!!!

Tommy: I loved it. Working is when I’m my happiest. Being active and the whole experience felt so exciting. Especially after so many months of binging on Netflix and drinking copious amounts of red wine!


Do you have any words of advice for talent who may be feeling a little apprehensive about going back to working on set?

Tracey: I had no qualms as I had been totally reassured before & during the shoot. All bookings are different of course but ask your agency any questions regarding any concerns you may have beforehand. 

Tommy: Do not worry about anything. The guidelines are so strict with employers during this time that every precaution is being undertaken. Just be grateful that you are being booked as the industry is very hard right now! Everyone who is working at this time has your health and their health at the forefront of their minds. Stick to what you are told to do and, above all, enjoy it!


How did it go doing your own hair and makeup?

Tracey: I so missed being pampered by a HMU artist! I think it was ok though - friends were complimentary on Instagram. I did take a lot of things with me - every hair appliance I own & more cosmetics than I normally take to a shoot. A benefit of driving to the location meant it was easy to take more stuff!

Tommy: It went fine. I appreciate it is probably much harder for women with HMU, as us men tend to do very little with our hair and make-up anyway. Which has of course its drawbacks as I quite like a bit of eyeliner if I’m honest! A little foundation though and we were good to go!


Was there a stylist on set, if so how did this work?

Tracey: Yes! My sizes were checked before the shoot & a dress had been chosen. There were a few options but the client was happy with the initial choice. 

Tommy: The producer acted as the stylist for me and my outfits were already picked out when I arrived;  I was also checked over when I first turned up. The client and production team discussed there and then what I would be wearing and a decision was made very promptly. A quick sign off with outfits is always nice! More of that please!


Thank you so much both of you for chatting with us today, we hope this is been helpful to anyone feeling unsure about going back to work or wanting to know what it's like on set for models and actors right now.


Read our shoot guidelines here.

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written by Georgia Butler

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