Use Photoshop to remove Mac OS X Leopard window shadows from screenshots
02 December 2008
Whilst i was writing a recent article it was necessary for me to take some dialog screenshots from OS X Leopard. There are several ways of doing this:
- Using the grab utility that comes with OS X.
- Holding Apple, ctrl, shift and 4, release, then press space.
- Entering "screencapture -ic" on the command line, then press space. (This appears to be the same capture as above)
- Use one of the many third party applications available, including InstantShot, SnapzProX, Jing and SnapNDrag
The problem i have with all these is that either they capture the window along with the large drop shadow that Leopard uses, or they capture the window without the drop shadow, but the rounded corners look poor and the edge border is missing
I have come up with a few Photoshop steps that reconstruct the dialog corners and edges, and also allow you, should you wish, to add a smaller drop shadow back in.
- Take a screen shot, using Apple, ctrl, shift and 4, then pressing space to capture a window.
- Create a new Photoshop document based on the clipboard, and set the background colour to be white.
- Paste the screenshot in, it should look something like the dialog above, but with a black background.
- Using the magic wand tool, with anti-alias switched off, and a tolerance set to 100, select the black region of the image where the shadow would be.
- Click the "Add layer mask" button to create a mask based on that selection.
- Adjust the mask as necessary, to make sure only the window is masked.
- Inverse the mask by pressing Apple and i, to make the shadow masked.
- Add a layer style to the masked window, select stroke with the following settings: and set the gradient from #7f7f7f to #000000
- Select Inner Shadow with the following settings:
- And if so desired, select Drop Shadow with the following settings:
- I have placed these styles in a downloadable layer style here.