The DA Photo begins with the Soldier. The first step in creating a good DA photo is to take the time to ensure your uniform is properly fitted and reflects only the awards and citations annotated on your ERB/ORB. Our photographers and staff can assist you by inspecting your uniform and pointing out obvious flaws (e.g. improper fit, damage), but it is YOUR responsibility to ensure awards, decorations, unit crests and badges are worn correctly and match your ERB/ORB.

Army Regulation 640-30 states that officer and NCO photos shall be updated at a minimum per the following schedule:

  • General officers every third year; and
  • Officers and NCOs every fifth year.

Policy allows Soldiers to update their photo when they are awarded an Army Commendation Medal or higher. New unit patches, service stripes or awards lower than an ARCOM are not justifiable reasons for a new photo.

Only authorized Visual Information activities may take official DA Photographs, as required by AR 640-30. Digital versions of official DA photos WILL NOT be issued to the customer.

Photographers will take reshoots only when there is an error caused by the photographer or the equipment. Reshoots may be completed upon receipt of a digitally signed email or written request signed by the company commander or equivalent in the Soldier’s chain of command. Click here to download a sample memorandum.

Photographers, Soldiers or anyone providing assistance to the Soldier while taking the official photograph will not stuff, clip, or otherwise change or alter the appearance of the uniform to make it fit properly. Pockets, lapels and the front of the jacket may be taped.

Photographers will not alter the photograph, to include adding new rank, ribbons, stars or erasing waistlines or wrinkles by using photo imaging software such as cloning or healing tools.

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