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How To Do a Screenshot On a Mac

Hi this is Gary with MacMostcom

Today let me show you how to take a screenshot on your Mac MacMost is brought to you thanks to a great group of supporters Go to MacMostcom/patreon There you could read more about it, join us, and get exclusive content

So macOS includes a very powerful built-in screenshot tool Let's take a look at how to use it The most versatile way to start using this tool is to use the keyboard shortcut, Shift Command 5 This brings up the tool here at the bottom of the screen There are three modes for capturing the screen

One is Capture the entire screen Capture a Selected Window is another way and you can also Capture a Selected Area or portion of the screen There are also two modes for recording the screen but we won't look at those in this tutorial Then there are options To start I've got it set to Save to Desktop, Timer set to None, and Show Floating Thumbnail turned off

Let's go and capture the entire screen Since I have multiple screens here I can simply click on the screen that I want to capture it You can see the cursor is set to this little camera icon If I want to capture all three screens that I have on my Mac I can just hit the Capture button or press Return Let me click on this main screen here to capture it

You can see it saves the screenshot as an image file, saved here to the desktop just like I asked it to So one of the key options is to set where you want the screenshot saved So under Options there are a variety of choices You can set it to a folder like the Desktop folder, the Documents folder, or you can choose another location This allows you to choose any folder on your hard drive, an external hard drive, iCloud or anything you can get to in the Finder you can select as a folder to use as a place to save the screenshots

You could also set the Clipboard as a location This would just be like copying the screenshot to the clipboard Then you could immediately paste it into something You could paste it into an app you're using You can paste it into a Mail message or a Text message

Anywhere you can normally paste a graphic You can also choose one of three apps to open up the screenshot So, for instance, I can use Mail Then if I we're to take the screenshot here it would then open up the Mail app and create a new message and put that image in there as an attachment for that message The same thing if I choose Messages

Then I capture this screen and it will open up a new message with that image as an attachment Perhaps the most powerful app in this list is Preview If you use that it will open up in Preview and now you can do things with it It hasn't saved the screenshot anywhere So this is a great way to preview what you're doing and maybe just close it out without saving

But you can also use any of the markup tools here to add marks, to crop, to do various different things, to select an area and copy You can also in Preview not only Save out the finished document but also Export So if you don't want it saved as a png here I can export it immediately to another format Also in Preview you can Share from here So after you've marked it up or cropped or whatever you want to do you can access the Share options and there are sometimes more share options here in Preview than you get directly in the Screenshot tool

Now if you're still using the default then you probably have Show Floating Thumbnail turned on When this is turned on, and you also have selected a Folder to save to not an app, then this is what you get when you take a screenshot If I click here you can see I get this thumbnail at the bottom right corner The thumbnail will be there for a few seconds and then will disappear and the file will appear at the place where I selected it So here it appears on the desktop

So if I wait long enough I get the same result with the floating thumbnail turned on as I do with it turned off But with it turned on I have the ability to click the thumbnail before it goes away When that happens I get this little preview window It's not in the Preview app You can see here I'm not in any specific app

It's just this special little floating window I can use the same markup tools that I have in Preview including the ability to crop, rotate, do all sorts of different things Add text and shapes and everything I can hit the Trashcan button here just to throw it away I can hit the Done button here that will save it to the location where it should have originally saved it, or I can hit the Share button and then go someplace else like to Mail, or Messages, or send it to the Photos app

So this thumbnail gives you the ability to preview what you're about to save You can Edit and you can send it where you want So what about the other modes If I were to go and select Window instead of screen here then I can move my cursor over a window and just do a screen capture of that window So if I do that for this you can see I end up with a screen capture that's just one window and not everything else

Even if another window is over it and I were to do it, it will capture only that window and not the window that's over it Now if I were to select Capture a Portion of the screen I get a little crosshair cursor I can draw a rectangle Once I've drawn it I can drag it around and I can move the edges and the corners to capture exactly what it is I want Then I can hit the Capture button or Return to capture just that portion of the screen

Notice there's an option here for Remember Last Selection When you have that set then it will remember exactly the last portion that you captured So if I wanted to capture this section here in Capture and then I did it again you would see that it starts off in the same place I can still move it around but it will remember it for the next time that I want to capture an area There are two other options

One is Show Mouse Pointer which is pretty self explanatory The other is a Timer You can set it to delay taking a screenshot by five or ten seconds This is useful for doing things like capturing things you can't capture when you actually click to take the screenshot For instance say I want to show the menus

I can't normally do that because if I click here I'm not clicking here to show the menu So with the five second delay I can click here to capture the screen While it's counting down I could go and look at one of the menus here Now if I look at my screenshot you could see it captured that menu as well Now there are some keyboard shortcuts that you could use while doing screen capture

So I'm going to do Shift Command 5 to bring up the tool Notice it's set to capture a screenBut if I hit the spacebar and it immediately changes to capturing an area Hitting the spacebar again changes to capturing a window Then it will toggle back and forth between area and window

Now I already mentioned that you can hit Return instead of clicking the Capture button In addition you could do Escape to escape out of using the tool Command period will do that as well But my favorite keyboard shortcut here is to simply use Command C to copy So here I've got the Option set to Save to the Desktop not to the Clipboard

But even with it set like that any mode I'm using, Capture Screen, Capture Window or Area, if I simply do Command C it does the capture and saves it to the Clipboard instead of the default location Now if you have to capture the screen a lot it may seem like it's too many steps to use Shift Command 5 and select your mode here Hit Capture, hit Return You can do a lot of different things with just one keyboard shortcut Take a look in System Preferences and then under Keyboard and Shortcuts

There's an entire section for screenshots You'll see here the screenshot and recording options for Shift Command 5 But there are four other keyboard shortcuts as well For instance you can do Shift Command 3 to capture the screen and Shift Command 4 to capture an area If you add the Control key to those it will save them to the Clipboard rather than to a file

In addition if you use the Selected Area shortcut then it will allow you to capture a window by pressing the spacebar So, for instance, if I do Shift Command 4 you could see now I have the cursor here to be able to drag an area I can drag an area and it quickly captures it and saves it But if I do Shift Command 4 and then hit the Spacebar it switches to Window capture mode Keep in mind the options that you set when you do Shift Command 5 for where to save and other options here will be obeyed when you use the other shortcuts as well

So for instance if I set it to Open in Preview and then I do Shift Command and 4 and select an area it will open up that area as a screenshot in Preview So if you have to use Screen Capture a lot then it is worth it to know all of these keyboard shortcuts But if you only have to do it occasionally you could forget about the first four and just remember that Shift Command 5 will get you any of the options you need

Source: Youtube

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