How to take screenshots of your Mac on a window-by-window basis (also without margins or shadows)

Updated : Dec 05, 2021

I will show you how to take screenshots on a Mac window by window.

At that time, I will also introduce how to add or not add “margins and shadows” to the window.

【With shadow and margin (Default)】

Macスクリーンショット余白あり

【Without shadow and margin】

Macスクリーンショット余白なし

Compare with list of methods

The screenshot function of Mac is easier to use than other OS such as Windows, and I think that it has a lot of basic editing functions.

Personally, aren’t most people satisfied with just the standard features? ,I think.

So, first try using the standard functions of ①, and if you are not satisfied with the functionality, try using the various apps of ②.

There are various apps in ②, but this page introduces a free app called “monosnap”.

MethodAdvantageDisadvantage
① Take screenshots with
Mac standard function
・Mac standard function・Advanced editing functions
cannot be used
② Take screenshots
using various apps
・Some apps can use
advanced editing functions
・Cannot be used
at companies or schools
where free software
is prohibited

① Take screenshots with Mac standard function

Here, the explanation is based on the following two-stage configuration.

When taking a screenshot, you can choose to add or not add “margins and shadows” to the window, but you can set it so that it always uses the method specified in advance by the terminal command.

Many people don’t want to add “margins and shadows” all the time, so please refer to it.

Basic operation method

▶ Press shift + ⌘ command + 4 at the same time on your keyboard.

Mac US Keyboard

▶ As shown in the figure below, the shape of the mouse cursor is a cross with numbers.

Move the mouse cursor inside the window where you want to take a screenshot.

Macでスクリーンショット

▶ After moving the cursor inside the window, press “Space” on the keyboard.

Then, the cursor will change to a camera icon as shown in the screen below.

Then left-click the mouse or click the trackpad.

Macでスクリーンショット

If you press ⌥ option on your keyboard at the same time, there will be no “without margins and shadows”.

【With margins and shadows (Default)】

Macスクリーンショット余白あり

【Without margins and shadows】

Macスクリーンショット余白なし

▶ Screenshots are saved on your Mac desktop.

That’s all for the basic operation method.

How to change the setting to add / remove margins (shadows) to windows with terminal commands

▶ Open “Applications” -> “Utilities” folder in the Finder and double-click the app “Terminal.app”.

Mac Terminal.app

▶ When “Termina.appl” starts, proceed to each setting from the “List of items that can be set” after this.

Macの「ターミナル」の基本画面

i) Without margins and shadows

▶ Copy and paste the following command into the terminal.

After copying and pasting, press the return key to execute.

defaults write com.apple.screencapture disable-shadow -boolean true

▶ After executing the command, copy and paste the following command and press the return key to execute it in order to reflect the settings.

killall SystemUIServer

ii) With margins and shadows (Default)

Copy and paste the following command into the terminal.

After copying and pasting, press the return key to execute.

defaults write com.apple.screencapture disable-shadow -boolean false

After executing the command, copy and paste the following command and press the return key to execute it in order to reflect the settings.

killall SystemUIServer

This is the end of explanation, “① Take screenshots with Mac standard function”

② Take screenshots using various apps

If you search online, you may find multiple free software that can do the same thing, but I recommend the free software called “Monosnap” that I personally like.

The two reasons we recommend it are that it is easy to operate and that it is easy to write characters and figures when using it in manuals.

Mr. Otter
Mr. Otter

The screenshots of the screens used in this blog are also processed using Monosnap.

If you explain how to use Monosnap in detail here, the story deviates from the purpose of this page, “Take a screenshot with a single window”, so I will only explain how to obtain it and how to use it basically.

▶ Click the link below to open the corresponding page of the “App store”.

Please install from there.

‎Monosnap - screenshot editor
‎Capture and edit screenshots, upload files, record video and .GIFs! Share a visual explanation with your clients and colleagues. Free version features: • Non-...

▶ After installation, double-click “Monosnap.app” in the “Applications” folder of the Finder to start it.

Monosnapのアプリアイコン

▶ When Monosnap starts up, a lightning bolt-like icon will appear in the menu.

Click the icon and select “Preferences…” to make the settings.

Monosnap起動時のアイコン
Monosnapのメニュー表示
クリックで拡大表示

▶ When the following Monosnap setting screen is displayed, click “Interface” from the icon list above.

Monosnapの設定画面
クリックで拡大表示

▶ After switching to the screen below, change “Add shadow to windows” as needed.

If checked, “margins and shadows” will be added to the screenshot.

If you uncheck it, “margins and shadows” will not be added.

After completing the settings, click the red circle button on the upper left to close the setting screen.

Monosnapの設定画面

▶ After making the settings up to this point, let’s actually take a capture.

To start the capture, do one of the following two patterns:

【① : Select from menu】

Monosnapでキャプチャ

【② Keyboard shortcut】

Mac US Keyboard

▶ Then, the mouse cursor becomes a cross and the selected window is surrounded by a red line.

When the window you want to capture is selected, left-click the mouse or click the trackpad.

Mac Screenshot

▶ If you can capture it, the following screen will be displayed.

There is a “Save” button in the upper right, so you can choose a save location and save.

Monosnapでキャプチャした

This is the end of the explanation, “② Take screenshots using various apps”.

Conclusion

This page introduced two methods.

Each has its advantages and disadvantages, so please consider which one to use by looking at the “Compare with list of methods” at the beginning.

Reference information

Take screenshots or screen recordings on Mac
On your Mac, take pictures or recordings of the screen using Screenshot or keyboard shortcuts.
Spa cat
Spa cat

This is the end of this article.

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