OS X Tip: Send screenshots by email

Ever wanted a super-easy way to send screenshots by email? Using Apple’s Mail app it’s easy but strangely unintuitive. Simply begin your email and make sure your cursor is in the body of the email where you want it to go. Then go to the Mail menu and hover over Services. In the new sub-menu there should be options for:

  • Capture Full Screen: You probably don’t want to use this one. It will immediately take a screen capture, which will include your unfinished email.
  • Capture Screen Using Timer: This will capture your whole screen after a countdown begins.
  • Capture Selection From Screen: This is probably the most useful. After you select this item you simply drag and click from one corner to the opposite of what you want to capture. The box that gives you those instructions in the middle of the screen will disappear when you drag, so don’t worry if it is in the way. If you need to switch applications you’ll need to use Command-Tab since any clicks will immediately cause the screen capture to happen. So you might want to set up everything beforehand to the side if you aren’t agile with the keyboard.

Once it’s inserted there will be a selector either above the body (in Mountain Lion) or below (Lion or older) to adjust the picture size.

Bonus tip: This doesn’t only work with Mail, that’s just where it is probably most useful. You can also use these instructions for Messenger or iChat to send a picture message, in Notes (in Mountain Lion), in Pages, or just about anywhere else you can insert a picture.

Behind the scenes: See what I did there? I did a screen capture of a screen capture. My head hurts a little.