There are more than a few ways to combine screenshots into one PDF. The methods may differ if you are using a Mac or a PC, but the end result is the same. You get a single PDF file that can easily be emailed, shared via messaging apps, or uploaded to a cloud. Also, you can print out the document if you need a physical copy.
Luckily, creating one PDF from your screenshots is not rocket science. Native macOS apps, certain third-party websites, and cloud services allow you to quickly get your PDF file. The following sections will give you a detailed guide on how to do it, so let’s dive right in.
Quick Actions were introduced with macOS 10.14 (Mojave) and they are designed to help you make quick changes to files. There is no need to access an app in order to alter files and this feature works with documents, images, and most other file types on your Mac.
To combine screenshots into one PDF, locate the image files you’d like to add and select all of them. You can bulk select with your mouse/trackpad or click on the screenshots while holding the Cmd key.
Right-click on one of the selected screenshots (two-finger tap on the trackpad) and navigate to Quick Actions. Select “Create PDF” and voila, you’ve got a single PDF file from the screenshots.
Note: This method retains the native resolution of your images/screenshots. Based on the size and resolution, each image is on a separate page within the PDF document.
There is also an option to create a PDF from the native Preview app. This method works on Mojave and other macOS versions, so you can use it if you haven’t already updated your Mac.
Select your screenshots, right-click on one, go to “Open With,” and choose Preview (it’s the first option on top of the submenu). The screenshots will pop up in Preview and you can drag them up or down to reposition them. Once you are happy with the arrangement, click on File and select “Export as PDF.”
If you need to include a large number of screenshots it’s best to put them in one folder. For example, title the images screenshot1, screenshot2, screenshot3, and so on, following the order you want to use in the PDF.
Select all the files, right-click, and choose “New Folder with Selection,” then open that folder in Preview. This way the screenshots automatically appear in the order you want.
When you take screenshots on your phone they might appear sideways or upside down in Preview. To correct this, select a screenshot and click on the Rotate button in the Preview toolbar (right above the image).
As there are no native tools to create a PDF from screenshots on a PC, Windows users need to resort to third-party tools or services. Here we’ll focus on free web/cloud-based services.
Merge PDF is a free browser tool that lets you drag and drop screenshots and merge them into a single PDF file. This service comes from Small PDF and a great thing about it is that you can connect it to Google Drive or Dropbox and get files from there, too.
After you upload your files, click on the Merge PDF button and your file will be ready for export in a few seconds. You can download it, send via email, upload to Dropbox/Google Drive, or edit and compress the file.
There is also a Smallpdf Chrome extension that allows you to quickly manage and edit PDFs within your browser. So feel to check it out if you need advanced PDF tools.
Like Merge PDF, Combine PDF is a free web tool for quick PDF creation. This one’s a simple tool, as well. Just drag and drop your screenshots, click Combine, and you’ll get the file in a few seconds. The highlight of this service is that you get to upload up to 20 screenshots per PDF.
Note: Both Merge PDF and Combine PDF claim to delete your files soon after the download/upload is done. So there’s no need to worry about the privacy and security of your data.
This method yields somewhat different results than the previous, but you still get to combine screenshots into one PDF. Open a new Google document and drag and drop your screenshots onto the page. Here you can resize the images and get two or more to fit on one page.
If you need the PDF for a presentation or a business meeting, the Google Docs method is great because you can also add annotations to your screenshots. When you finish uploading and editing the screenshots, click File in the menu bar, select “Download As,” and click “PDF document (.pdf).”
The PDF file puts screenshots against a white document background, whereas the background may appear black or graphite with most other methods. However, this is only a matter of aesthetics and it doesn’t make any difference to the actual file format or its quality.
Get a Perfect PDF Screenshot Combo
By now you’ve probably already tried one of the given methods, so which one is it? Did you use web-based services or native macOS tools? Tell us about your preferences in the comments section below. And if you are a Windows user, feel free to suggest a free app that works well offline.