How to Use Your Phone For Your ID Card Program

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Taking a high resolution, easy-to-see photo for your ID program may be easier than you think. There’s no need to invest in high-end photo equipment or hire out the job. All you need is you phone.

Before we dive into the tips and tricks to taking quality phone photos, remember this:

First rule of using your phone for ID badge photos, no selfies. This is a selfie free zone.

Taking the Picture with Your Phone

There are four key points to follow when using your phone to take an ID badge photo.

1. Background – If the subject’s background is too busy, it can distract from the subject. If it is too dark, the whole image can be hard to read. Try to aim for a solid background in a light and bright space so that the focus is on the subject.The subject’s background is too busy it can distract from the subject. If it is too dark, the whole image can print darker than you wish. Try to aim for a solid color, well-lit background so the focus is on the subject.

2. Lighting – Make sure your subject is well lit. You can spend the time editing the images afterword but taking a better picture from the start will always yield a better result. One of the benefits of using your phone to take the picture is that you can easily check the shot and show for the subject’s approval.Make sure your subject is well lit. You can spend the time editing the images afterword but taking a better picture will always yield a better result than editing. The benefit of using your phone to take the picture is that it is easy for the subject to give their approval or request another shot.

3. Distance – It is recommended to take the picture within 4 feet of the subject. That may feel like it’s a little too close to the personal bubble, but this distance will help give a cleaner picture and help with your safety and security since it will be easy to read. Note: it’s not recommended that you take a picture farther away and then zoom in. Photos become blurry and distorted when you do this.It is recommended to take the picture within 4 feet of the subject. That may be a little close to the personal bubble and potentially reveal more of the subject’s complexion than desired but have no fear. Minor blemishes won’t show up on the printed card and this will look a lot cleaner than if you took the picture farther away and then zoomed in.

4. Orientation Be sure to take the picture vertically as that is standard for ID cards.

Take the picture vertically as that is the standard for ID cards.

Bonus – Tripods are your friends. Use a tripod to get a standard, consistent, and crisp shot each time.You can always use a tripod to get a more standard and crisp shot if desired.

Check out more tips on taking a great ID badge photo.


Importing and Uploading ID Photos

The following instructions are compatible with ID Maker 3.0 software. If you use another ID design software, we suggest confirming available functionality.

You will need to import the photos onto your computer and save them in a folder. The file location is important, remember it.

The recommended image size to use for ID card printing is 1MB. Smartphone images are around 3MB so you will need to open the photo in a basic photo editing program like, Paint or Preview, to resize the image.

Next, you will want to import them into your card design software. If you are designing one card at a time you can simply go into ID Maker software and upload the photo. There you will be able to edit the color, crop the size, and anything else you need. 

If you are using an employee database and want to include the employee photo with the rest of their information you will need to include a field with the file path of the employee’s photo. ID Maker will then be able to grab the photo and print it with the rest of the employee’s information.

Was that confusing? Here's a video of it in action! How to Import Your Employee Database with ID Maker 3.0>

You can proof and edit every card individually but remember, the better the original picture is, the more time it will save you later.

There. Now you can snap away with your smartphone and make a killer ID card too.

If your ID design software doesn’t have these features and you want them. Check out ID Maker 3.0 for more info and get a free 30- day trial so you can see the IDVille difference.


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