How to Screenshot and Crop on Mac: A Comprehensive Guide

Greetings, Mac users! Are you ever in need of taking a screenshot and cropping it for a specific purpose? Look no further, we’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ll be walking you through the steps on how to screenshot and crop on Mac. It’s a simple process that will definitely come in handy for regular usage.


Step 1: Capturing the Screenshot

The first thing you need to do is capture the screenshot. There are a few methods available for this. You can capture the entire screen by pressing Command + Shift + 3 simultaneously. On the other hand, you can capture a specific part of the screen by pressing Command + Shift + 4. This will allow you to select the specific area of the screen to capture.

Step 2: Opening the Screenshot

After capturing the screenshot, it will be saved on your desktop. You can open it by double-clicking the image icon. If you need to open it later on, you can find it in the “Pictures” folder.

Step 3: Opening the Preview App

The Preview app is a built-in image editing tool on Mac. You can find it by searching it on Spotlight, or by going to the “Applications” folder.

Step 4: Selecting the Crop Tool

Once you’ve opened the Preview app, select the image you want to crop and go to the “Tools” menu. From there, select the “Crop” tool.

Step 5: Resizing the Crop Box

The crop tool will automatically create a box around your image. You can resize this box by dragging the corners until it covers the specific area you want to keep.

Step 6: Applying the Crop

Once you’ve resized the crop box, press “Enter” or click on the crop button to apply the changes.

Step 7: Saving the Cropped Image

After applying the crop, your image will be cropped and ready to use. Press Command + S to save the changes or go to “File” and select “Save As”.

Step 8: Choosing the Image Format

When you save the cropped image, you’ll be prompted to choose the image format. You can choose between JPEG, PNG, GIF, BMP, and TIFF. Choose the format that best suits your needs.

Step 9: Choosing the Image Quality

After selecting the format, you’ll be given the option to choose the image quality. If you don’t need a high-quality image, you can select a lower quality to save space on your hard drive.

Step 10: Renaming the Image

Before saving the image, you can rename it to something that will help you remember why you cropped it or where it will be used.

Step 11: Saving the Image

Finally, press “Save” to save the cropped image with the changes you’ve made.

Step 12: Sharing the Image

After you’ve saved the image, you can share it with others via email, messaging apps, or social media platforms. You can also use it for personal or professional use.


Now that we’ve gone through the steps, let’s dive into some explanations to better understand the process.

The first few steps involve capturing the screenshot using hotkeys. Learning the hotkeys for capturing the screen will save you time in the long run, especially if you need to take a lot of screenshots. Moreover, it’s essential to know how to open the screenshot and locating it easily.

The preview app is easy to use and should be your go-to choice for editing and cropping images. The crop tool in the Preview app is intuitive and straightforward. You can easily select the area you want to keep by dragging the resizeable box. Furthermore, selecting the image format and quality will depend on what you will use the image for.

Lastly, sharing the image is a common practice, so make sure you saved the file in a format that is easy for others to open. Cropped images are often used for social media posts or websites that require specific sizes and dimensions.

Tips and Tricks

Tip 1: Use the Preview App for Basic Image Editing

The Preview app is versatile and can perform basic image editing, such as resizing or rotating images.

Tip 2: Use Third-Party Apps for Advanced Image Editing

If you need more advanced image editing, such as color correction or background removal, consider using third-party apps like Photoshop or GIMP.

Tip 3: Use Keyboard Shortcuts for Easy Access

Learning keyboard shortcuts will save you time and make your workflow more efficient. Some useful shortcuts include Command + C to copy and Command + V to paste.

Tip 4: Choose the Right Image Format

Choosing the right image format will depend on what you will use the image for. For example, if you’re using the image for web design, a PNG or JPEG format will work well.

Tip 5: Review Your Cropped Image

After cropping an image, take a moment and scrutinize it to make sure you’ve cropped it perfectly. You can use the zoom tool to get a better view.

Tip 6: Rename Your Image After Cropping

Renaming the image will help you identify the file easily and know where it can be used if you have lots of files.

Tip 7: Save Multiple Versions of the Image

Save both the original and cropped version of the image for future reference. This will come in handy if you need to make changes to the file.

Tip 8: Use the “Copy to Clipboard” Feature

The “copy to clipboard” feature is very convenient, especially if you need to paste the image into another file. Press Command + Control + Shift + 4 to copy the selected area.

Tip 9: Experiment with Different Crop Sizes

Try experimenting with different crop sizes to see which one works best. You can always undo the changes if you don’t like the results.

Tip 10: Practice Makes Perfect

Practice makes perfect. The more you crop images, the more refined your skills will become. Don’t be afraid to experiment and make mistakes, as this is part of the learning process.

In conclusion, this article has provided you with valuable information on how to screenshot and crop on Mac. With these tips and tricks, you can enhance your image editing skills and improve your workflow. Remember to practice consistently and take your time to produce high-quality images.

Advantages and Disadvantages of How to Screenshot and Crop on Mac


1. Easy to Use: Taking screenshots and cropping images on a Mac is a straightforward process that requires minimal effort.

2. Accessibility: With the help of keyboard shortcuts, users can take screenshots and crop images quickly and easily on a Mac.

3. Efficient: Cropping the image in the same window as the screenshot software saves time and increases productivity.

4. Quality: Macs are known for their high-quality screens, which result in clear and beautiful screenshots.

5. Integration with Other Apple Applications: The screenshots and cropped images can be easily integrated with other Apple applications such as Pages, Keynote, and iMovie.

6. Customizable: The screenshot feature on a Mac is customizable, allowing the user to choose the type of image they want to capture.

7. File Format: Screenshots taken on a Mac are saved in multiple file formats, including JPEG, PNG, and TIFF.

8. Annotate: After taking a screenshot, users can easily annotate or add text to the image with the built-in editing tools.

9. Free: Taking screenshots and cropping images on a Mac comes at no extra cost, as it is a built-in feature that comes with every Mac device.

10. Versatility: A screenshot can be taken of anything on the screen, including websites, documents, or even videos.


1. Limited Editing Tools: The built-in editing tools on a Mac are limited, making it difficult to make advanced edits to the cropped images.

2. Apple Devices Only: The screenshot and cropping features are exclusive to Mac devices; users with other devices cannot enjoy the same benefits.

3. No Cloud Storage: Apple’s screenshot feature does not automatically save the images to a cloud-based storage system.

4. Compatibility Issues with Non-Apple Applications: Cropped images may have compatibility issues when used with non-Apple applications or devices.

5. No Online Access: Users must be physically present with their Mac device to take screenshots and crop images.

6. No Video Editing: The crop feature on a Mac only works for static images, and no video editing is available.

7. Limited Flexibility: The screenshot feature can be limited in terms of screen-capture options and resolution.

8. No Image Optimization: There is no automatic optimization of screenshots for use on different devices or platforms.

9. File Management: Saving screenshots and cropped images in the right folders or file locations can be a challenge.

10. Learning Curve: While taking screenshots and cropping images on a Mac is relatively easy, there is still a learning curve to become proficient with this feature.


1. What is a screenshot?

A screenshot is an image taken of your computer screen. This can be useful for sharing information or saving a moment for later reference.

2. How do I take a screenshot on a Mac?

Press Command + Shift + 3 on your keyboard to take a screenshot of your entire screen. You can also use Command + Shift + 4 to select a portion of your screen to capture.

3. Where do my screenshots save?

Your screenshots will automatically save to your desktop by default. You can also change the default save location in your system preferences.

4. Can I edit my screenshots?

Yes, you can use a photo editing software to edit your screenshots. Alternatively, you can use the built-in editing tools in macOS to crop or annotate your screenshots.

5. How do I crop a screenshot on a Mac?

Open the screenshot you want to crop in the Preview app. Select the crop tool from the toolbar and select the portion of the screenshot you want to keep. Click “File” > “Save” to save your cropped screenshot.

6. How can I annotate a screenshot?

Open the screenshot you want to annotate in the Preview app. Select the markup tool from the toolbar and choose the annotation type you want to add. Click “File” > “Save” to save your annotated screenshot.

7. Can I copy and paste a screenshot?

Yes, you can use Command + Shift + 4 and then select the screenshot area you want to copy. Then, use Command + C to copy it. You can then paste the screenshot into any document or application.

8. How do I take a screenshot of a specific window?

Press Command + Shift + 4, then press the spacebar. Your cursor will turn into a camera icon. Click on the window you want to capture to take a screenshot of that window only.

9. Can I take a screenshot with a timer?

Yes, you can use the built-in macOS screenshot timer. Open the “Screenshot” app, select “Options,” choose the countdown timer you want, and click “Capture” to take a timer screenshot.

10. How do I take a screenshot of a dropdown menu?

Press Command + Shift + 4, then press the spacebar. Your cursor will turn into a camera icon. Hold down the Option key and click on the dropdown menu to capture it.

11. Can I take a screenshot of my entire webpage?

Yes, you can use the built-in macOS Safari screenshot tool to take a full-page screenshot of any webpage. Open the webpage you want to capture, choose “File” > “Export as PDF,” and select “Save to PDF” to capture the entire webpage.

12. Can I take a screenshot of my Touch Bar?

Yes, press Command + Shift + 6 on your keyboard to take a screenshot of your Touch Bar.

13. How do I take a screenshot of my Apple Watch?

You can take a screenshot of your Apple Watch by pressing both the Digital Crown and the Side Button at the same time. The screenshot will be saved to your iPhone’s camera roll if it’s nearby.

How to Screenshot and Crop on Mac

Screen capturing and cropping on a Mac is incredibly easy, but finding where to start can be a bit daunting. Whether you’re trying to capture a funny moment on your screen, crop an image for a website, or include an image in a presentation, learning these simple steps can make your Mac experience a breeze.


With the several methods that Apple has provided to capture and crop images, screenshots on Mac have never been easier. Mac users have a lot of options when it comes to capturing their screen, from using keyboard shortcuts, to utilizing the built-in capture tool, to downloading third-party apps from the App Store, depending on what your needs are. And with the ease of cropping an image, making necessary alterations has never been simpler. Now that you have learned the basics of how to screenshot and crop on Mac, you can take your computer expertise to the next level.

With that in mind, thanks for reading and happy screenshotting!