Basic Snagit Tips and Tricks

Here are some tips and tricks that can help you get the most out of Snagit.

Whether assembling common captures into profiles or just changing the color scheme of the Snagit user interface, these tips can save you time and help you make great looking images.

Change the Color of the User Interface

Don't like Snagit's default black color scheme? Not a problem. Silver and blue themes for both Snagit and Snagit Editor are available.

In Snagit: Tools > Program Preferences > Program Options tab > Color scheme dropdown

In Snagit Editor: Snagit button > Editor Options > General tab > Display options > Color scheme dropdown

Create Profiles for Common Tasks

Find yourself changing the same settings over and over? Create profiles that match your most frequently used configurations. For more on profiles, see Creating Capture Profiles.

Skip the Editor, Go Straight to an Output

Don't need to edit your screenshot, or perhaps you want to send your screenshot straight to the Clipboard? Change your capture output options to skip the Editor.

First, select an output from the Output dropdown menu in the Profile Settings pane. This could be the Clipboard, an output to a particular program, or even straight to a file.

To skip previewing your capture in the Editor, deselect the Preview in Editor option in the same menu.


Tip: If you want access to these settings, consider saving them as a profile.

Preview Transparency in the Tray

Curious how the transparent parts of your image look without the checkerboard pattern that indicates transparency in the Editor? Check out your Open Captures Tray.

The thumbnail previews in the Open Captures Tray show your transparent images on a black background and on top of the dark gray background or the orange selection color of the Tray itself. This isn't always a preview of how your images looks on your intended background, but it gives you an idea of how it might look against a similar dark background.

Ctrl + Selection to Clone Areas

Holding <CTRL> while moving a selection created with the selection tool doesn't move the selection, but instead makes a copy. This copy flattens after you've moved it, just like a normal.

Use this technique to quickly "clone" an area to fill in gradients, create copies of buttons or text fields, or anything else you might want to quickly copy and place.

Use the SNAG File Format to Archive Projects

To save vector object information (all those callouts, pasted images, and the other stuff that makes the Editor neat), use the SNAG file format. When you take a capture, this is the format that Snagit uses to auto-store your image until you save it to your preferred file format.

If you want to edit your image again later, save a copy as a SNAG file. These files aren't viewable outside of Snagit, but they save all the information about your capture so can move all the elements.

A Few Basic Design Tips

Screenshots benefit from the same ideas and techniques that a graphic designer uses when creating content. Here are a few to think about when creating images.

  • Rule of thirds: The human eye finds some images more interesting than others. Dividing an image into thirds show you where the most interesting parts of your images should be. Visually divide your image into thirds both horizontally and vertically, creating nine boxes. Try placing things like callouts, arrow, and text along those lines for maximum impact.

  • Color selection: Use complimentary colors (colors located opposite on a color wheel) in your effects to create a look of cohesion in your image. 


  • Think about context: What do you want your audience to look at? Is it important that they see your screenshot in the larger context of what was on your screen, or is it better to trim all that away and just show the exact window or button you want to call attention to? Deciding may help your image communicate your message better.


Title Category Level Format
000 - Introduction to Drawing Tools Getting Started I Written
001 - Introduction to Text Capture Getting Started I Written
002 - Introduction to All-in-One Capture Getting Started I Written
003 - Working with the Canvas Canvas II Written
004 - Snagit File Formats File Formats I Written
005 - Documentation Documentation I Written
006 - Searching and Tagging Library II Video
007 - Stamps and Callouts Edit I Video
008 - Basic Snagit Tips and Tricks Tips I Written
009 - Working with Transparency Canvas II Video
010 - Use Profiles to Save Settings Profiles II Written
011 - What You Need to Know About Transparency File Formats II Written
012 - Quickstyles and Hotkeys Styles II Video
013 - Snagit Library Library II Video
014 - Print-ready Screen Captures Capture II Video
015 - Introduction for New Users Getting Started I Video
016 - Introduction for Existing Users Getting Started I Video
017 - Hotspots Edit II Video
018 - Import and Export Profiles Profiles II Video
019 - Editing Captures Edit I Video
020 - Capturing Transparent Windows Capture II Video
021 - Creating Capture Profiles Profiles II Video
022 - Capture Modes Capture I Video
023 - Using All-in-One Capture Capture I Video
024 - Sharing with Snagit Share I Video
025 - Introduction to Video Capture Capture II Written