Thanks to a little-known shortcut, you can easily take a clean screenshot of your Mac’s Dock with no background, including translucency in the PNG alpha channel, with no cropping. Here’s how to do it.
The secret: a simple shortcut
To take a screenshot of your Dock (and just your Dock), press Shift+Command+4, then press the spacebar on your keyboard. This puts the screenshot tool in window and menu capture mode.
After pressing the spacebar, your mouse cursor will change to a camera icon. Place the cursor on your Dock. When you see the Dock highlighted, click your primary mouse button.
When you click, you will hear the sound effect of the screenshot. A clean image of your Dock in PNG format is saved to the desired storage location (the desktop by default).
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Alternatively, you can run the Screenshot app (or press Shift+Command+5) and then select the “Capture Selected Window” button (It looks like a small window icon) in the screenshot toolbar that appears.
After clicking, hover your mouse pointer over the Dock and click your primary mouse button to take a screenshot of the Dock.
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what you get
When you open the screenshot for a closer look, you may notice that the PNG file includes a translucent alpha channel area for a shadow around the Dock and the Dock itself, depending on the operating system you’re using.
In macOS 10.15 Catalina or earlier, the Dock itself is pure opaque white. But in macOS 11.0 or later, the Dock appears translucent when viewed in a photo-editing program. Either way, you won’t see any trace of the desktop background behind it, which is very handy.
Now that you have the Dock screenshot file, you can edit or share it as you would normally share a photo. Lots of fun!
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