How To Take Screenshots On Mac

To Take Screenshots On Mac: press and hold the Command (⌘) + Shift + 3 keys simultaneously

Ever wondered how to capture your Mac screen in a flash? Screenshots are vital for showing others exactly what you see on your display. This informative guide will navigate you through the step-by-step methods of Take Screenshots On Mac, from full-screen captures to specific window grabs. Ready to become a screenshot guru? Stay tuned!

Quick Summary

  • There are several methods to take screenshots on a Mac, including capturing the full screen, a specific portion of the screen, or a window or menu item.
  • To capture a full-screen screenshot on your Mac, press Shift + Command + 3 keys simultaneously. The screenshot will be automatically saved as a file on your desktop with the name “Screen Shot [date] at [time].png.”
  • To capture a partial screen screenshot, press Shift + Command + 4 keys and drag the crosshair to select the specific portion of the screen you want to capture.
  • To capture a screenshot of a specific window or menu item, press Shift + Command + 4 keys and then press Spacebar once. Click your mouse or trackpad to take the screenshot.

Different Methods to Take Screenshots On Mac

Several methods are available to capture screenshots on a Mac, depending on the specific area you want to capture.

Full-screen screenshot

Taking a full-screen screenshot on your Mac is an effortless process. Full-screen screenshot Here are simple steps to guide you:
  1. Ensure everything you want to capture is displayed on your screen.
  2. Press the Shift + Command + 3 keys simultaneously on your keyboard.
  3. You’ll hear a camera shutter sound, which indicates that the screenshot has been taken successfully.
  4. The screenshot will be automatically saved as a file on your desktop with the name “Screen Shot [date] at [time].png.”
  5. If you wish to save it in another location, you can change this default setting in the Screenshot app’s Options menu.
  6. To edit or annotate your screenshot, use the built-in Markup tool in macOS.
  7. Share your screenshots via email, messaging apps, or cloud storage platforms for quick and easy access.

Partial screen screenshot

Partial screen screenshot To take a partial screen screenshot on your Mac, follow these steps:
  1. Press the Shift + Command + 4 keys simultaneously.
  2. Your cursor will turn into a crosshair.
  3. Click and drag the crosshair to select the specific portion of the screen you want to capture.
  4. Release the mouse button to take the screenshot.
  5. The screenshot file will be saved to your desktop with the default file name “Screen Shot [date] at [time].png.”

Window or menu screenshot

To capture a screenshot of a specific window or menu on your Mac, follow these steps:
  1. Ensure the window or menu you want to capture is open and visible on your screen.
  2. Press Shift + Command + 4 on your keyboard. This shortcut will change your cursor to a crosshair.
  3. Move the crosshair cursor over the window or menu you want to capture.
  4. Press the Spacebar once. The cursor will transform into a camera icon with a highlighted window or menu.
  5. Click your mouse or trackpad to take the screenshot.

Touch Bar screenshot

To capture a screenshot of your Touch Bar on a Mac, follow these simple steps:
  1. Press Shift + Command + 6 simultaneously.
  2. The screenshot will be automatically saved to your desktop as a PNG file with the current date and time as the filename .

How to Access and Save Screenshots

To access and save your screenshots on Mac, head to your desktop, where the screenshot files are automatically saved. But that’s not all – learn how to customize keyboard shortcuts and use Preview for editing by reading more in our comprehensive guide!

Finding screenshots on your desktop

You might wonder where it’s saved after taking a screenshot on your Mac. The good news is that finding your screenshots is quite easy. By default, all screenshots are automatically saved to your desktop as PNG files with the filename “Screen Shot [date] at [time].png”. This makes it convenient for you to locate and access your captured images quickly. To find your screenshots, navigate to your desktop by clicking on the desktop icon in the dock or using the shortcut Shift + Command + D. Once on the desktop, you’ll see all of your recently taken screenshots neatly displayed as individual files. From here, you can easily open them or move them to other folders for organization purposes. If you prefer a different location for saving screenshots, don’t worry – it’s customizable! You can change the default save location by opening the Screenshot app and clicking “Options” at the bottom of the window. From there, select a new folder location where you’d like future screenshots to be stored.

Customizing keyboard shortcuts

Customizing keyboard shortcuts is a great option if you want to streamline your screenshot-taking process on your Mac. Here’s how you can do it:
  1. Open the System Preferences menu by clicking on the Apple menu in the top-left corner of your screen and selecting “System Preferences.”
  2. In the System Preferences window, click “Keyboard,” represented by a keyboard icon.
  3. From the tabs at the top of the Keyboard preferences window, select “Shortcuts.”
  4. In the left sidebar, click on “Screenshots.” This will bring up all the default screenshot-related keyboard shortcuts.
  5. To customize a shortcut, double-click on its current combination of keys (e.g., Shift + Command + 3). A text field will appear where you can enter your desired shortcut.
  6. Press the keys that you want to use for your customized shortcut. Make sure that they don’t conflict with other system functions or applications.
  7. Once you’ve entered your customized shortcut, it will automatically be saved and activated for future use.
  8. You can remove or disable any existing shortcuts by clicking and selecting “Delete” or unchecking the checkbox next to them.

Using Preview for editing

To further enhance your screenshots on Mac, you can utilize the built-in Preview app for editing. With Preview, you can easily annotate and quickly edit screenshots before saving or sharing them. Here’s how you can use Preview for editing:
  1. Open the screenshot in Preview by double-clicking on the file.
  2. In the toolbar at the top of the Preview window, you’ll find various editing tools that you can use.
  3. If you need to crop or resize your screenshot, click the Adjust Size option in the Tools menu at the top.
  4. Select the Crop option in the Tools menu or use Command + K shortcut to crop an area of your screenshot. Then, drag and adjust the selection box around the desired area.
  5. To rotate or flip your screenshot for better orientation, go to Tools > Rotate Left/Right or Flip Horizontal/Vertical options.
  6. Once satisfied with your edits, save the changes by clicking on File > Save or using Command + S shortcut.

Additional Tips and Tricks for Taking Screenshots

Another tip for taking screenshots on a Mac is to use third-party screen capture apps, which offer more advanced features and customization options.

Copying screenshots to the clipboard

To quickly copy a screenshot to your clipboard on a Mac, press the Control key along with any of the screenshot keyboard shortcuts. For example, press Control + Shift + Command + 3 to capture the entire screen and copy it to your clipboard. This lets you easily paste the screenshot into an email, document, or image editing software without saving it as a file. Utilizing this feature allows you to streamline your workflow and avoid cluttering your desktop with unnecessary screenshots. So, copying it directly to the clipboard is convenient if you need to share or edit a screenshot on your Mac quickly.

Using third-party screen capture apps

Mac users can enhance their screenshot capabilities by using third-party screen capture apps. These apps offer additional features and customization options to make screenshots more powerful and efficient. With these apps, you can easily annotate screenshots, add text or arrows, highlight specific areas, blur sensitive information, and much more. Some popular third-party screen capture apps for Mac include Snagit, Skitch, and Lightshot. These apps provide an intuitive interface and capture screenshots with just a few clicks or keyboard shortcuts. Additionally, they offer advanced editing tools and seamless integration with other software applications to share your captured images easily. In addition to basic screen-capturing functions provided by macOS, third-party apps have extended features such as timed captures that enable delayed screenshot-taking after a specified period. You can also choose different file formats like JPEG or PNG according to your preference or the requirements of your project. Furthermore, some advanced screen capture tools allow you to record video tutorials or GIFs directly from your computer screen.

Screen recording

Screen recording is a useful feature on Mac that allows you to capture everything happening on your screen in real time. Whether you want to create tutorials, record gameplay, or save online content, screen recording can come in handy. Here’s how to do it:
  1. Open the app or window you want to record.
  2. Press Shift + Command + 5 to open the screenshot toolbar.
  3. In the toolbar, click on the “Record Entire Screen” button.
  4. A pop-up window will appear with recording options.
  5. Click the “Options” button to choose the microphone input and set a timer for your desired recording.
  6. Click the red record button or press Shift + Command + R to start recording.
  7. While recording, a small control panel will appear at the top of your screen with options to pause, stop, or cancel the recording.
  8. Once you’re done recording, click the “Stop Recording” button in the control panel or press Shift + Command + R again.
  9. The recorded video file will be saved on your desktop with a name like “Screen Recording [date] at [time].mov.”


In conclusion, capturing screenshots on a Mac is quick and easy with various methods available. Whether you need to capture the entire screen, a specific portion, or even a window or menu item, there are keyboard shortcuts to help you do so effortlessly. With the ability to customize shortcuts, edit and annotate screenshots using built-in tools or third-party apps, and easily share them with others, taking screenshots on a Mac has never been more convenient. So go ahead and start capturing your screen moments with confidence!


1. How do I take a screenshot on my Mac?

To take a screenshot on your Mac, press and hold the Command (⌘) + Shift + 3 keys simultaneously. The screenshot will be saved as a file on your desktop.

2. Can a screenshot capture only a portion of the screen?

Yes! You can capture only a portion of the screen by simultaneously pressing and holding the Command (⌘) + Shift + 4 keys. You will see a crosshair cursor that allows you to select the desired area for the screenshot.

3. Where are screenshots saved on my Mac?

By default, screenshots are saved as image files on your desktop with names like “Screen Shot [date] at [time].png”. You can also change the save location in System Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts > Screenshots.

4. How do I screenshot just one window or application?

To capture only one window or application, press and hold down the Command (⌘) + Shift + 4 keys together, then press Spacebar. Your cursor will turn into a camera icon, allowing you to click on the desired window or application to take its screenshot.