How to Take Photo on Mac

Alicia Santos

Mac, Tutorials

Taking photos on a Mac is a simple yet powerful feature that many users may not be aware of. Whether you want to capture a screenshot, a specific area of your screen, or even record a video, Mac provides several built-in tools to help you accomplish this. In this tutorial, we will explore different methods to take photos on your Mac.

1. Using the Screenshot Tool:
Mac’s built-in screenshot tool allows you to capture images of your entire screen, specific windows, or custom-selected areas. To use this tool, follow these steps:

a) Capturing the Entire Screen:
Press the Command + Shift + 3 keys simultaneously. Your screen will flash and the captured image will be saved as a PNG file on your desktop.

b) Capturing a Specific Window:
Click on the window you want to capture to make it active. Press the Command + Shift + 4 keys together, then press the Spacebar.

Your cursor will change into a camera icon. Click on the desired window to capture it.

c) Capturing a Custom Area:
Press the Command + Shift + 4 keys simultaneously. Your cursor will turn into crosshairs. Click and drag to select the desired area you want to capture.

2. Using Preview App:
Preview is an image viewer and editor that comes pre-installed on every Mac. It also provides an easy way to take screenshots without using keyboard shortcuts.

a) Taking Screenshots:
Open Preview from your Applications folder and go to File > Take Screenshot. You can choose between capturing the entire screen, specific windows, or selecting custom areas just like with the built-in tool.

3. Recording Screens and Videos:
If you want to capture a video or record your screen, Mac’s QuickTime Player can do the job for you.

a) Recording the Screen:
Open QuickTime Player from your Applications folder and go to File > New Screen Recording. Click on the red record button and choose whether to record the entire screen or a specific portion. Once you finish recording, click on the stop button in the menu bar.

4. Using Third-Party Apps:
Apart from built-in tools, there are various third-party applications available that offer additional features for capturing photos and recording videos on your Mac. Some popular options include Snagit, Skitch, and Camtasia.

  • Snagit: Snagit allows you to capture screenshots, record videos, add annotations, and create GIFs.
  • Skitch: Skitch is a simple tool for capturing screenshots and adding annotations with ease.
  • Camtasia: Camtasia is a professional screen recording and video editing software that offers advanced features for creating tutorials and presentations.


Taking photos on your Mac is an essential skill that can come in handy in various situations. Whether you need to capture an error message, create visual content for presentations, or simply want to save memorable moments from your favorite videos, Mac provides several built-in tools as well as third-party applications to fulfill your needs. Experiment with different methods mentioned in this tutorial and find the one that suits you best.

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