Has anyone new to the field notice that all you basically trained in the academy is not what it is in the real world. As soon as I got into my first house the real way took effect quickly. Also a little more dificult learning the new tools we just received as compared to the training ones. What about taking the pictures for you family in your gear or at a scene. Be safe.
Safety is and should always be the primary concern. Your training fires weren't there to be realistic - they were there to train you. My instructor has told us that we're not there to see how fast we can put the fire out. We're to be trained in a safe, practical way and we are there to learn. We are there to watch how the fire behaves, how the smoke and fire gases behave in an enclosed room. It's also a confidence builder. Plus, we're also there to listen to our officers and those with more experience.
As for pictures, well, that is something that safety must also play a role. Remember the three primary responsibilites of the fire service, the mission of the fire service. It might be possible to have a medic who is standing by to take pictures, or depending on the size of your department, have your PIO take pictures. Just remember, though, that your safety, the safety of your fellow firefighters, and the safety and lives of the community are the most important.