In 2020, Zoom calls, screen shares, screencast, and emails have replaced meetings, whiteboards, and in-person conversations. Without the ability to get an idea across in person, sometimes screenshots are the clearest way to convey a message. Screenshots show the current state of a website or your desktop browser. You can point out things on the screen, show bugs, or promote a website update, especially if you work in tech like I do.

To make your screenshots more clear, you may need to annotate, add text, or circle elements of the image. In this article, I'll talk about how to edit a screenshot on a Mac using the Kapwing Studio, a free online tool for creators.

How to Take the Screenshot on a Mac

Before you take your screenshot make sure the screen you are looking at on your computer shows exactly what you want to capture. You might consider closing tabs, dismissing notifications, and exiting the downloads bar to avoid clutter and information overload.

When the screen looks right, there are two different ways you can grab a screenshot on a mac:

Approach 1: Grab the WHOLE screen: On your keyboard, hold down the following keys at the same time: command + shift + 3.

Approach 2: Grab part of the screen: On your keyboard, hold down the following keys at the same time: command + shift + 4 . This will make your cursor turn into a small "+" symbol and allow you to click somewhere on the screen, hold the cursor down, and drag to select a portion of the screen you would like to capture.

Grab part of the screen

Tip: hit the escape key to get out of the screen-grab mode if you aren't ready for your selection yet.

This will automatically grab a screenshot and save it to your computer desktop.

Edit the Screenshot

Open up Kapwing Studio in any Mac Browser. Kapwing works well in both Chrome and Safari Browser, so choose the Mac browser of your choice.

Once you open Kapwing select "Click to upload" and find the screenshot in your desktop files. Your screenshot will be saved on your desktop and the file name will be "screenshot" followed by the date and time it was taken.

Once your screenshot uploads you can begin to use the studio tools listed in the bar at the top of your screen to manipulate your image:

  • Crop: You can use the crop tool to cut out parts of your image
  • Circles and lines: Mark your image with the shapes tool. Click the "Elements" button in the top toolbar to select rectangles, arrows, lines, and circles to overlay on the screenshot. Once the shape is added, you can make the shape's fill transparent to emphasize elements, annotate important parts of the screenshot, and draw the user's attention to certain parts of the screen. Make the annotations more noticeable by adding dashes in the lines and arrows and adding a background or outline on text layers. You can also use the shapes to redact or censor certain parts of the screenshot that contain private information.
Example line annotation in Studio

Once your screenshot is edited, click the Export button in the upper right corner. After your screenshot image has downloaded, click "download" to save the watermark-free edited image the downloads file on your computer. You can share the PNG or JPEG screenshot, share it with friends or coworkers, or use it in another project. If you're not signed in, just sign in to remove the Kapwing watermark.

Thanks for reading! I hope that this article has helped you annotate your screenshots with ease. Here at Kapwing, we use Macs also, so we know it can be challenging to use the "Preview" app to edit your photos. This tutorial gives you another simple, free photo editor for more sophisticated multimedia edits.