I take a lot of screenshots on a daily basis for various uses, so I make sure I use the best tools for this purpose.
Here are the various options out there.
Mac Inbuilt Screenshot Facility
Your Mac comes with an inbuilt screenshot facility that is accessed via keyboard shortcuts. If you use Dropbox, you will also get prompted to automatically save screenshots to the Screenshots folder on Dropbox, and a link to the latest saved screenshot will be copied to your clipboard, so you can instantly share that image with others if you need to.
If that covers all your needs, I don’t see any reason for using any apps, just learn the few shortcuts that you need and you’re good to go.
This is an app developed by Evernote and it integrates perfectly with that application. So if you’re using Evernote and your use cases include frequent snipping and annotating of screenshots to subsequently save into Evernote, this is the perfect solution.
You can also use it as an independent screenshot tool, as it enables you to save images locally as well in an easy way.
What I really like about Skitch is that you can drag and drop the finished screenshot onto a WordPress post and skip the usual steps of saving locally, then uploading to WordPress, then inserting into a post.
Unfortunately, Skitch is no longer being maintained by Evernote, so perhaps it’s time to move on to an alternative, which in my opinion should be Snagit
Snagit is a paid application but is one of the most advanced screenshot apps you’ll ever come across for your Mac. You’ve got a full suite of editing tools and you can also record video clips. It has a more advanced brother called Camtasia Studio which is perfect for more advanced screencasts.
Snagit lets you edit the border and dimensions of the screenshot before you finish taking it, just like Skitch. Once you take the screenshot either from the keyboard shortcut or menu bar, it opens in the full Snagit UI. Here you can add arrows, text, comment bubbles, shapes, fill colors, a ridiculous number of stamps, magnification for focus, crop it, blur it, cut it out and more.
It also allows me to drag and drop images into WordPress.
Lightshot Screenshot is a free screenshot tool that lets you draw and annotate. It doesn’t live in your dock, but rather the menu bar so it’s readily available. Click the icon to draw your frame, then use the included tools to mark it up. These are a pen, line, circle, rectangle, highlighter, arrow and text.
Over in the left toolbar is a bunch of sharing tools including one of my favorite features I’ve ever seen in a screenshot program. You can copy the image to your clipboard, upload to the cloud, share it with friends and save it, but you can also perform a Google search with it. It will take the screenshot, upload it to Google and let you automatically search with the image to find similar results or identify what is in the picture. It’s a hugely convenient way to image search.
Unfortunately, you can’t open any existing screenshots in Lightshot or edit ones you already saved, so it’s best used solely as a creation tool. It’s definitely overall a bit more basic than Skitch, but since it’s totally free it’s definitely a good candidate. This has been my goto choice for the past 3-4 years.
What screenshot app do you use?
In my case, I will switch to using Snagit almost exclusively as it has everything I need. For screencasts, I will use Snagit or Camtasia depending on how complex my needs are.
Examples of High-Quality Tutorials and Screencasts
If you’re an online worker, knowing how to create a quality tutorial or screencast can turn out to be a most useful skill.
When I hire new writers or tutorial producers for WP Mayor I always ask them to check out the TutsPlus Instructors page simply because it is jam-packed with useful information about creating courses, tutorials and screencasts. It touches on all the important aspects and give you an awesome intro to teaching others online.
So if you want to level up your tutorial and screencast skills, check that link out, it has helped me improve my own workflow and I’m sure you’ll find it beneficial too.