Photo for Renewing your Drivers License

As it turns out, it’s just a little bit over ten years since my husband and I got married. That means, in our case, that we need to get our drivers licenses renewed. And for that, you need a photo. A perfect assignment for this week!

The specific instructions for a Swedish driving license photo can be found at “transportstyrelsen“. In short, it needs to be a frontal portrait with the outer dimensions of 35x45mm and the distance between the pupil and the top of the chin needs to be 14-17mm. The background shall be white or light and the face shall be evenly lit with no reflections in glasses etc.

Well, this is of course very doable in our home studio. We chose the following set-up:

Lighting diagram for drivers license photo

There’s a speedlight that lights up a reflective backdrop. It is one of my big reflectors that I can hang from a stand. Then I used a studio softbox coming in from the front and about 45 degrees from above. This makes sure there are no reflections on glasses. To reduce shadows there’s a reflector underneath the face of the subject. This set up is commonly known as butterfly lighting and with the reflector below there is very little shadow casts in the face. All in line with the directions of the drivers license photo.

If you have a decent photo printer at home it can be printed there. In our case we sent the photos out, being very careful to check the dimensions and cropping procedures of the printing service. It worked like a charm.

There will be a javascript for automation of this process in photoshop shortly.


The Assignments
The assignments are basically a very, very small study circle. The only participants, so far, are my husband and I. We take turns coming up with new photographic or post-production tasks to complete. There is approximately one new task per week. The purpose of these assignments is to practice and get better at photography and post-production work. It doesn't matter how much you know, you can always improve! Please go here for a list of the assignments .

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