November 2017 (updated May 2020), Author: Serge Mikeyev

Error: Illumination appears to be poor

US error illumination appears to be poor

When you upload your photo for the US visa or passport online application on the US department of state website you may get this error The submitted photo did not meet the image quality requirements, Illumination appears to be poor.

Possible Reasons

This error may happen because of several different problems:

What can you do about this error?

You need to take a new photo and upload it again. Note, you can get a new correct photo with your phone or digital camera with online. Photos made with are accepted in 99.7% of cases.

Note: Photo upload failures at DS-160 or similar forms on the US Dept of State website is not a big problem, as you can try again and again until you upload a correct one.


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