Tips To Make Your Driver’s License Photo Memorable

Getting your driver’s license is a rite of passage, and so is taking the photograph that comes along with it. Everyone who wants to drive has to do it, and it’s usually a very awkward picture that will make your friends laugh — especially a couple of years down the road when you bear little resemblance to the person on the license. With that in mind, it’s easy to understand why many people want a snazzy photo.

In general, getting your license is a bland process: you wait a long time in a long, boring line, you have your picture taken in a tedious fashion, and then that’s it, you’re done. Some people want the experience to be less mundane, and to make the picture less simplistic and boring. But how can you accomplish these things? It’s pretty easy. Here are some tips for having a memorable photo, having a good photo, and having a fun experience.

Tips To Make Your Driver's License Photo Memorable

How to Have a Memorable Photo

Do something crazy with your hair: There are many things thatthe DMV can prohibit you from wearing or doing during your driver’s license photo session. For instance, you can’t wear a crazy mask, and you can’t face backwards. Often they’ll even make you take a second picture if your eyes were closed.

You can still do something memorable with your hair, however. Dye it a crazy color, fashion it differently than you normally would, or get it wet and then sleep on it so you look absurd. Anything you can do with your hair to make you look unique will make your driver’s license photo that much more memorable, and give you something to laugh at — in a good way — later on in life. Furthermore, men can do fun things with their mustaches to really make their photo memorable; for instance, they can grow out a mustache and beard, and then shave one side of it.

Wear a funny t-shirt: Some DMV’s cut off the picture at your neck, but many show it from the chest up. This is the time to break out that ridiculous t-shirt you have in the back of the closet. Just make sure it says or shows something funny at the top, since that is what will be visible.

How to Have a Good Photo

Stand as far back as possible: The way the DMV cameras are set up, people’s faces tend to look large and slightly distorted. This is less of an issue if you stand as far back as possible.

Ask for a redo: Most DMVs will be nice to you, but only if you’re nice to them. If you don’t like your photo, ask them politely and earnestly if you can have a second shot at it. More often than not, they’ll oblige.

How to Have a Fun Experience

Bring some entertainment: Must people get stuck in a DMV line for an hour and think “why didn’t I bring a book or a magazine?” Don’t be that person! Anticipate that you’ll be waiting a long time, and bring the requisite entertainment — reading material, music, or portable games or movies.

Have fun with the people getting their picture taken: This will make your picture time and their picture time more fun. While you’re in line, have fun messing with the people getting their picture taken. Tell jokes to try and get them to laugh, or make funny faces behind the photographer.


Frederick Diamond is a freelance writer based in Richmond, Virginia. For those concerned about protecting their ID, Frederick recommends Protect Your Bubble ID Theft services.

Image credit goes to Helena Avermark.