My passport expires next month so it is high time for me to apply for a new one. I went to the U. S. State Department’s website where your can fill in and print the application. All the instructions are there.
Since I have a passport in good condition I just need to send the application, my current passport, a check for $110, and a headshot photograph that adheres to the agency’s guidelines.
In the past I have paid to have my photo taken but this time, with the help of a free photo tool on the State Department site, I’m going to try taking my own picture.
The background must be white or off-white so I hung a black-out shade in the window and used that as a background. The subject must face forward with a neutral expression and NO digital improvements are acceptable. The first dozen photos didn’t work because I had not left enough photo below the shoulders. So back to the studio where I used a wall as background, lit the background more evenly, and tried not to smile.
After loading the photo onto my computer I opened the photo tool and chose the photo I wanted to use, reduced its size to fit in the frame (click the “Help” button on the left side of the screen for detailed instructions), cropped then saved the photo.
The tool tells you just how big the actual head should be inside the frame.
All I need to do now is print the photo on photo paper (matte or glossy is acceptable), staple it to my application, put all the paperwork with attached photo, my current passport, and my check in a large envelope and mail it to the State Department address in Philadelphia.
I just need to plan a trip.
Where are your travel plans next taking you?