When I capture a screenshot with Cmd + Shift + 5, I can edit the image within Apple's Markup editor, like so:

Is there a way to copy that image (which may have been edited) without saving it?

I just need to be able to copy it within that interface, so I can delete it clicking in the trash icon in the upper-right corner.

  • 1
    Sindre Sorhus has just released an application called Shareful that does exactly this. Sep 9, 2020 at 22:20
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    It's incredible how unclear and unintuitive the markup application is. I have now clue what the "Done" button does (labelled "OK" in your screenshot): does it copy the result somewhere? It doesn't even seem to be an application (the current application title in the macos' menu bar remains set to the underlying application), so it's even hard to google how to use this unnamed thing :-) Oct 29, 2020 at 10:08

2 Answers 2


It appears you can just hit cmdc while in the Markup editor and it copies it to your clipboard!

So summary of steps:

  • Type cmdshift4
  • Click and drag the crosshairs to capture an area. Or, remember you can capture a whole window by hitting space and then clicking your mouse.
  • Click the little preview image that just popped up in the bottom right of your screen
  • Mark up the image as desired
  • On older versions of macOS, before cmdc will work, you must click somewhere, in a non-marked up area, to unselect any markup tool in use (pen, figure, etc)
  • Type cmdc
  • Focus on another application and type cmdv it somewhere to paste it.
  • Once you know it worked, click the trash can icon in the screen capture tool to make it go away, without saving

I used these steps just now to paste this image:

enter image description here

I am on Mojave/10.14. I came here looking for the same thing. I happened to find this comment on Reddit that suggested this.

Edit 2021-10-12: Use cmdshift4 instead of cmdshift5, I prefer it, but either works. Clarified the step about unselecting markup tools before cmdc would work, however that didn't seem to be necessary anymore for me, now running Big Sur (11.6).

  • in new macos you can click edit>copy from top bar, if you want to use mouse.
    – Ali Waqas
    Jun 26, 2023 at 6:43
  • @Ali Waqas: Hi and thanks for the suggestion! Are you talking about macOS 14 (Sunburst, still in beta, expected later this year)? If so, looking forward to it. I'm on 13.4.1 and there is still no menu bar for the Screenshot app. Jun 26, 2023 at 15:29
  • No i meant the current 13.4 (Ventura) version. Once on markup screen, you will see the top bar and can copy from there.
    – Ali Waqas
    Jun 27, 2023 at 16:03
  • @AliWaqas: Hmm, I'd love it if it were there for me, but I don't see it. Maybe it's me. Feel free to post another answer! Jun 27, 2023 at 18:21
  • By top bar i mean the menu bar as shown here.
    – Ali Waqas
    Jun 28, 2023 at 19:09

Unless I'm misunderstanding your question, why not just use commandshift4 to select the marked up image and take a screenshot before deleting it?

Or, if what you're wanting to do is copy it to the clipboard, add the CTRL key to the keyboard shortcut. That is, by using CTRLcommandshift4 you can select the marked up image and take a screenshot but instead of it being saved to your drive, it'll just be copied to the clipboard allowing you to use commandV to paste it.

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    Yes, I know about Cmd + Shift + 4. The problem is: when I need to edit the screenshot with Markup, how I can copy the edited image? Aug 31, 2019 at 4:08
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    Maybe I didn't explain it clearly enough in my answer, but what I'm saying is just do what you're already doing but then when you want to copy the marked up image, take another screenshot of that image while it's still in the editor. And, if you use CTRL+CMD+SHIFT+4 to do it, then it'll be copied to your clipboard instead so you can paste it just like you copied it with CMD+C.
    – Monomeeth
    Aug 31, 2019 at 4:11
  • Ah, sorry! I did not understand what you've said. :P Thanks for explaining again with other words. But actually I already do that! I created this question to know if there's a "more elegant" way to copy the edited screenshot. Aug 31, 2019 at 6:13
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    Screenshotception? ;)
    – wintvelt
    Aug 31, 2019 at 8:00
  • 1
    @penguinrob Hmm, sorry, nothing that comes to mind just now. But if I think of something I'll ping you. :)
    – Monomeeth
    Nov 16, 2019 at 3:37

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