How to Screenshot on a Mac (Step-by-step with Photos!)

If you are a Mac owner and are wondering how to take a screenshot of it, then this guide is for you! There are several different ways users can take a picture of their screen, including simple keyboard shortcuts and using the Spotlight Search tool. It is unfortunate, however, that even though there are many methods to obtain screenshots, many individuals are unaware of which shortcuts to use or which is the simplest.

You can utilize the keyboard shortcut Shift, Command, and 3 to take a screenshot of the entire screen while using a Mac. If you wish to capture a portion of the screen, press Shift, Command, and 4, or Shift, Command, and 5. You can customize screenshot shortcuts by opening the Shortcuts pane located in Keyboard preferences.

Screenshotting on a Mac is a relatively straightforward process, as Apple made it as simple as possible in hopes that users would be able to remember how the feature works.

Despite this, there are other problems individuals encounter when taking screenshots, including not being able to locate the screenshot, not knowing what format the screenshot was saved as, or simply not being able to achieve the desired result.

Continue reading below to discover more information regarding screenshotting on a Mac.

Shift, Command, 3

Taking a screenshot on a Mac is as simple as holding down Shift, Command, 3, and clicking on the screen. The shortcut will capture the entire screen if these three keys are held down.

If users are not interested in leaving any part of the screen out, they should use this shortcut. After the photo has been taken, it can be cropped and styled as desired. You can edit the screenshot by clicking on the thumbnail of the photo that appears in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen.

One of the easiest methods for taking screenshots on a Mac is to use Shift, Command, and 3 as it only requires three steps. This shortcut is the most reliable option for users who wish to capture the entire screen in the photograph. It is important to note, however, that this shortcut does not allow for a great deal of customizability.

It is not a shortcut that should be used if the user wishes to eliminate certain portions of the screen before the photograph is taken. It is instead recommended to use the following shortcuts.

Shift, Command, 4

It is also possible to take a screenshot on a Mac by holding down the Shift, Command, and 4 keys at the same time. Using this keyboard shortcut, the cursor can be used to decide what to put into the photo.

The shortcut allows users to select what they would like to be captured; everything is up to their discretion.

With the new photo-capturing cursor (which will appear as a crosshair), place the tool in the corner where you want the photo to begin, and then simply click and drag the tool in the desired direction.

A thumbnail of the screenshot appears in the right-hand corner of the Mac screen after the screenshot has been taken. In this case, the screenshot has been successfully captured. The user should retry the screenshot if the picture is not displayed.

The user has complete control over what appears in the screenshot by pressing shift, command, 4. The user should use this keyboard shortcut if only a portion of the screen needs to be included in the photograph.

To close Shift, Command, 4 by accident, press the Escape key located at the top left of the Mac keyboard or press down on the trackpad (if using a laptop) without clicking or dragging.

Shift, Command, 4, Space Bar

Holding down the keys Shift, Command, 4, and Spacebar furthers the ability of the shortcut Shift, Command, 4. While Shift, Command, 4 allows users to decide exactly which portion of the screen they want in the photo, pressing the Spacebar, in addition, highlights portions of the screen, and the cursor will look like a camera icon.

This feature eliminates the customization option of Shift, Command, and 4 and replaces it with a selection of the part of the screen to be captured. When two windows are open next to one another, you can select which window you would like to screenshot by pressing Shift, Command, 4, and Spacebar.

Press Shift, Command, 4, and Spacebar, then left-click the screen (or just click on the trackpad). The screenshot will be completed and the thumbnail will appear in the right-hand corner of the Mac. To crop and edit the photo, click the thumbnail and then select the desired preferences.

It is important to click on the thumbnail as soon as possible to make edits, since the thumbnail will disappear after a few seconds.

If the Spacebar is accidentally pressed while you are attempting to do the shortcut shift, command, 4, then press the space bar again. By clicking the Spacebar again, users will be able to choose which parts of the screen they want to be highlighted in the photo.

The cursor will change from resembling a camera icon to resembling a crosshair. When the entire operation is an accident, however, you should click the escape key at the top left of the Mac keyboard.

Shift, Command, 5

Probably the most well-known way to take a screenshot on a Mac is to hold down Shift, Command, and 5. Due to the cause keyboard shortcut is used, all of the options appear automatically on the screen. Hence, users can simply read the list of available functions and choose the one they wish to use. All Mac users should be familiar with the shift, command, and 5 shortcuts, which allows them to take screenshots as well as record screen activity.

By pressing Shift, Command, 5, three different screenshotting options will become available. The three options are: capturing the entire screen, capturing the selected window, and capturing only a portion of the screen. Screen recording can be performed in two ways: by recording the entire screen or by selecting a specific area.

Furthermore, there are numerous ways to customize the screenshot according to the needs of the user. After using the Shift, Command, 5 shortcuts, click the options drop-down button, and numerous saving options, timer options, as well as further options will become available.

Users can save screenshots to the following locations under the “Save to” heading:

  • Desktop
  • Documents
  • Clipboard
  • Mail
  • Messages
  • Preview
  • Other Locations

A timer can be set to none, five seconds, or ten seconds under the “Timer” heading.

Users can choose whether or not to show a floating thumbnail, remember their last selection, or display the mouse pointer by choosing the “Options” heading.

If you accidentally press Shift, Command, 5, you can simply press the escape key to disable the screenshot.

Spotlight Search

Mac users often find it difficult or nearly impossible to memorize all of the different keyboard shortcuts. There are so many shortcuts and functions to learn that many people do not bother memorizing any of them. The good news is that you can still take screenshots on a Mac without memorizing any shortcuts at all.

The cursor on a Mac should hover over the top right-hand corner. The magnifying glass should appear, and after clicking on it, the word “Spotlight Search” will appear. If you type “screenshot” in the search bar, you will see the same screen that appears with shift, command, and 5 when you click on the first option.

If you use spotlight search, everything related to screenshots will be available to you. Therefore, definitions, safari searches, images, and messages will be displayed. It is recommended to use the spotlight search when trying to locate a specific function. The spotlight search feature will make it easier for users to find everything related to screenshots.

How to Find Screenshots on a Mac

When all of the various keyboard shortcuts are memorized, taking a screenshot can be a very simple process. The question then arises as to where to find the screenshots that have been taken. Many users have difficulty finding their previously taken pictures and resort to taking another screenshot in order to compensate.

Therefore, many duplicate screenshots are taken, which results in more storage being used on the Mac. Furthermore, taking multiple screenshots is a hassle and requires more steps than necessary.

On a Mac, open the Finder application in orto a screenshot. The application is responsible for storing all of the data on the computer, ranging from applications to airdropped photographs. A screenshot will be automatically saved to the Desktop folder when it is taken. This folder houses screenshots so that they can be found by users in a convenient location as quickly and easily as possible.

The user can open the Finder app and click on “Recents,” located at the top of the screenshot that was taken recently. As the files will appear in the order in which they were saved onto the Mac, the most recent screenshot should appear.

It will also appear directly on the desktop.

How Are Screenshots Saved on a Mac?

Whenever a screenshot is taken, it is automatically saved as a PNG file to the desktop. This standard-title allows users to easily find their screenshots, particularly if they know when the screenshot was taken.

While Mac screenshots are stored as PNG files, users may choose to convert them to PDF, TIFF, JPG, or GIF. These are all common options and may be desired by some users. In this case, users should refer to the step-by-step tutorial, How to Change the Default Screenshot File Format in macOS.

You can watch the following video to see how to change the file format of a screenshot taken on a Mac:

Changing the screenshot format on a Mac

Screenshots don’t work on Macs?

Learn How to Take a Screenshot

Many people think that their Mac’s screenshot feature is malfunctioning, but they are simply not using it correctly. It is not sufficient to simply explain something in the text. Sometimes, the user needs to be shown how to do something. View the video provided below if a user is having difficulty taking screenshots on a Mac.

It is important to note that the following video explains all of the different shortcuts for taking a screenshot, as well as the steps that must be followed to take a successful screenshot using a Mac.

How to screenshot using a Mac

Turn the Mac Off

Sometimes, it is necessary to turn off a Mac. Even the most sophisticated technologies require some rest. The screenshot feature will not work if the Mac is powered off and then turned back on. Often, this simple fix is sufficient to resolve the issue. On the other hand, if it does not, then there may be something more seriously wrong with the computer.

Check Settings

Occasionally, incorrect settings are turned on or off without the user being aware of it. It can happen accidentally or because the computer malfunctions. If users are unable to take screenshots, they should check their settings.

You can check the keyboard shortcut settings by clicking the System Preferences icon in the Dock, clicking Keyboard, and then checking the shortcut settings. Please reactivate any keyboard shortcuts that have been disabled for screenshots.

Help on Menu Bar

The help tool may not be an additional method for taking screenshots on the Mac, but it does provide explanations on how to take a screenshot so that users do not need to memorize keyboard shortcuts. Whenever a user is confused or in need of clarification regarding their Mac, he or she should always use the help button, as it will provide excellent clarification when necessary.

Users should hover their cursor over the top of the screen until the menu bar appears. Click the “Help” button located at the end of the left-hand menu bar once the menu bar has appeared. Please type “screenshot” and then click on the “Take screenshots or screen recordings on Mac” link under the heading “Help Topics”.

There will then be an explanation in the macOS user guide of how to take a screenshot or record a screen on a Mac. The tutorial will explain the keyboard shortcuts that can be used. If all other actions are forgotten, the help button on the menu bar can be used to take a screenshot for the user. You may find this guide useful if you are new to Mac or if you have never taken a screenshot before.

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