If you’ve just had a baby and you need a passport for them, you will need to start with taking their passport photo. With our guide, there’s nothing easier to do. Read below and find out how and where to take passport photos for newborns as well as all the tips and tricks that might help you do so.
Options for taking your newborn’s passport photo
You’ve got quite a few options when it comes to taking your newborn’s passport photo. You can either do it in a special photography studio, in a store, or by yourself. All of these options have their advantages and disadvantages that we’ve summed up in a little step-by-step so that you can choose the best one for yourself. Take in mind that taking a passport photo for a baby can be slightly more challenging than doing so for an adult but there is zero to no need to worry. If you do proper research and follow our guide you will have these pictures ready in no time.
In a photography studio
There are many different photography studios strictly dedicated to taking passport photos for children and babies. They are usually not chains, so to find them in your location you will need to use Google. Mostly they can be found in cities or bigger towns but there is still a possibility to find them elsewhere.
A photography studio can be slightly pricey as the people working there are professionals. But that also means that the whole process should go smoother and faster, as well as less stressful as the employees have probably done this more than a few times and they will know how to soothe your child (of course with your help) enough so that the photo turns out perfect.
You will need to make an appointment for a photography studio beforehand. Make sure to double-check if they do baby photos and even inquire about their methods to be sure. It’s good to just automatically visit a photography studio that advertises strictly to children in the first place.
Some valid advantages of using a photography studio are: it should go smoother and faster, the photo is taken by professionals, the employees of a child-dedicated studio will know all the tips and tricks to make the process as nice to you and your baby as possible.
Some valid disadvantages of using a photography studio: it’s not guaranteed that you will find a children-dedicated photography studio in your area, they can be quite pricey, the appointment can be prolonged in time.
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In a store
Though not every store will offer this, some of the most popular chain stores where you can take passport pictures have photos of newborns so that shouldn’t be a problem. This is a very popular option when it comes to adults as passport photos are taken there all the time. It’s better to call ahead to your location and inquire if they are willing and if it’s possible to take a passport photo for your baby. Some locations may not have the resources.
When it comes to taking newborn passport photos in a store you won’t usually have to make an appointment. They mostly work as a “first come, first serve” rule so you can be asked to stand in line.
Some valid advantages of taking your child’s passport photo in a store: it’s a rather cheap and popular way to take passport photos, you don’t have to make an appointment, the employees are professionals in this field.
Some valid disadvantages of taking your child’s passport photo in a store: it is not guaranteed that a store will be prepared enough to offer this service, you might have to wait in line.
Of course, there is a possibility to take such photos by yourself, at home. It can seem like there is a lot to do but, in reality, you can do it quickly and easily while using these tips and tricks:
Positioning the baby
The first tip would be to lay your child on their back on a white sheet. To support their head you can lay a white or light-colored cloth underneath the sheet. Some people also advertise using the car seat with a white sheet over it for the best positioning. Remember that no other people or devices can be visible in the photo, so your hand can’t be supporting the head.
Taking the photo
The best time to take the photo is usually when your baby is rested and not fussy, but also not sleepy so that their eyes stay open. It’s also better to take the picture in an environment known to the child as that Is usually more comfortable for them and makes them better focused. Position your camera to parallel to the baby’s face as your baby should be looking straight into it. It’s good to use natural lighting but if it’s not possible then any soft, bright light from above should do. Don’t use flash as it creates an unnatural look and can also stress the child.
Printing the photo
Remember that you need to print your photo in a professional photo printer as a normal printer can leave ink smudges. The paper you print it on has to be of photo quality, either glossy or matte.
Your baby should have a facial expression as natural as possible. The photo should consist of at least 70-80% of their face. Their passport picture has to be as up-to-date as possible as children grow and change really fast. It’s good too, instead of taking a photo, take a video that you can snapshot – it will make your life easier as children move frequently.
Some don’ts of baby photo-taking
- Your child cannot have their eyes closed
- They cannot be in the middle of crying
- Don’t hide your baby’s birthmarks, scars, or moles
- Don’t cover them with toys and remove pacifiers.
Some valid advantages of taking your baby’s passport photo by yourself: it’s the cheapest option, you don’t need to leave your house, your baby is in a familiar environment.
Some valid disadvantages of taking your baby’s passport photo by yourself: it can take some time, it can be a bit frustrating as it might need more than a few tries, you might have to try for a couple of days before you get the right shot.
The cost of taking a newborn’s passport photo
A passport photo for a newborn can cost you differently depending on the option you choose. If you want to do it in a photography studio you can expect prices upwards of $15. If you choose an in-store option, the price should go down to around $8-$15. Doing it yourself is the cheapest option and it will cost you approximately, only for the printing, around $0.15-$0.35.
Passport photos for newborns summed up
You have three major options when it comes to passport photo taking for a newborn – you can do so in a store, by yourself, or in a photography studio. All of these have their advantages and disadvantages that we’ve summed up above. Remember to have the tips and tricks in mind and make your job easier for yourself. It’s actually quite an easy and enjoyable job.
Do I need to change my child’s passport photo every time their appearance changes?
No, even for small children passport photos are valid for a couple of years. Children grow really fast and the passport office is aware of that. You don’t have to change their passport photo as often as they change slightly.
Can I soothe my baby with a pacifier in the passport photo?
No, there should be no objects in your baby’s passport photo as well as nothing hiding their face. If your baby can’t calm down it’s easier to do it on another occasion instead of getting your photo rejected.