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Create your own Passport Photo using GIMP

This tutorial is for semi-techies who knows a bit of GIMP (image editing).   This tutorial is for UK style passport photo (45mm x 35 mm) which is widely used in UK, Australia, New Zealand, India etc.  This is a quick and easy process and one can create Passport photos at home

If you are non-technical, use this link  . If you want to create United States (USA) Passport photo or Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) photo, please follow this link

How to Make your own Passport Photo - Prerequisite

  • GIMP - One of the best image editing tools and its completely Free
  • USB stick or any memory device to store and take to nearby shop
  • A quality Digital camera
  • Local Shops where you can print. Normally it costs (£0.15 or 25 US cents) to print 8 photos

Steps (Video Tutorial attached blow of this page)

  • Ask one of your colleague to take a photo  of you with a light background. Further details of how to take a photo yourself    
  • Take multiple pictures so that you can choose from the best
  • A sample Photo shown below. Ensure that you have sufficient space above your head and your shoulders are clearly visible. 
  • I assume the photo you selected is a high quality image. DO NOT reduce the quality/pixels of the original image. Right click on the image and open with GIMP. (Hope you installed gimp into your machine) 
  • From your gimp "Toolbox", click the "Rectangular Select" tool. (Ensure that the "Fixed Aspect Ratio" is unticked).  Draw a small rectangle surrounding your face. In the left hand-pane, choose Size, Enter width=350 px and height=450 px.  (or a ratio of this) and then select "Fixed Aspect Ratio".  You will see a rectangle area in the image to be adjusted accordingly. (Please recheck the Aspect ratio is 350 x 450 as sometimes, GIMP will reset it)
  • Using mouse select a rectangle. Ensure it includes the hair, but fill approx 75% with the face. Feel free to increase your selection area if the image is big, as long as the aspect ratio is 350 x 450.
  • Now Crop the image and should look like below.   from GIMP Menu  Image -> Crop to Selection . 
  • Now we will resize the image.  From GIMP menu,  Image -> Scale Image and select width=750 px. The height should become 964 px.  If its not becoming 964, something went wrong. Start again
  • Open a new GIMP window (File -> New), and specify width = 814 px, height = 1092 px, and specify "fill with background" as below .  
  • This will ensure correct margins are left for the image before duplicating them. Copy (Control-C) and paste(Control-V) into new window. Click on the "white" border surrounding your photo, so that all layers are merged. 
  • Now click on the white border. Then Select Filters ->Map -> Tile from GIMP window.  "Tile to new size", then  disconnect the chain symbol (by clicking on it) and set the width = 3256 px & height = 2184 px 
  • Ensure the "Create New Image" box is ticked. Result should have 8 photos (as shown below) 
  • Save the result as a new file with jpg extension, and with no-compression i.e. set to 100%. Please ensure no compression is done for quality photos. (In newer GIMP2, you can do "File -> Export To  ", then save it as with jpg extension with "passportTile.jpg")
  • Save the .jpg file to a memory stick.
  • My local "BOOTS" shop allows USB memory stick, SD card, CD and many other storage to be used . Select 6x4 inch prints, which should print 8 photos. (Select no margins at boots)   or Alternatively you could print from your home printer:  From GIMP Image -> Print-size , width = 6 inches, height = 4 inches. Then print with File ->Print

Local Shops 

You can print nearby local shops or at home. Print  a single 6"x4" without border to get 8 passport photos !! The list of local shops are pretty much unlimited, but some of with automated printing machines include
  • UK - Boots - 6x4" costs 25p only
  • UK - Jessops - 5p !!
  • US - Walmart - 9cents
  • Canada - Walmart - $0.19
  • India - Local Shop: Ask for a Single 6x4" photo - 15 Rs
  • Australia - kmart - 15c
The list is pretty endless, but hope it helps you

Experienced Users

Just the values only if you are repeating the process
- UK Passport Photo Aspect Ratio: width = 350 px, height = 450 px.
- Scale to 750px wide.
- New window: width = 814 px, height = 1092 px.
- Tile to: width = 3256 px, height = 2184 px.

Video Tutorial - Step by Step

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