Monday, November 25, 2013

Dear Randy: How Do You Get Screen Images Into Your Blog Posts?

I received a blog comment recently saying:

" I can't figure out how to get the map images to Blogger. I've been trying for a hour. Ah well. It was fun for me to see anyway."

I use two methods to put screen images into my blog posts.  The key is that you have to save the image as a file before you can put it into Blogger.  The two methods are:

1)  When I want a full screen image, I do the following:

*  Go full screen using the F11 key on my Windows keyboard.

*  Tap the PrtScr (Print Screen) key on the keyboard.  I just made an image of a screen on my blog:

*  Open either my word processor or presentation program, and Paste (Ctrl-V or Edit>Paste) the screen image onto the word processor or presentation page. 

*  Right-click the image, and "Save Graphic" to a file folder on my computer using an easy to use and remember file name.

*  In a blog post, import the image file.  I usually pick the "Extra-Large" option so that it is readable on the blog.

2)  When I want a partial screen image (like the maps in the Saturday Night Genealogy Fun post this week), I do the following:

*  Use the Windows Snipping Tool that is part of Windows 7 (and 8?) accessories.  

*  When it opens, it wants me to draw a rectangle around the part of the screen I want to use.

*  Draw the rectangle (I can't show an image of this step), and in the Snipping Tool window, I then go to File and pick "Save As," name the image file and save it to a file folder on my computer.  

*  Alternatively, I could select Edit>Copy and then "Paste" it into the Word Processor or Presentation program, name it and save it to a file folder.

*  In a blog post, import the image file.  I usually pick the "Extra-Large" option so that it is readable on the blog.

3)  Occasionally, I will add graphics from the Graphics Toolbar (circles, arrows, rectangles, text boxes, etc.) and the Format menu items (Area, Line, text, etc.) to add explanatory information to the image.  I then use the Windows Snipping Tool to save that image for a blog post.  Here's an example:

4)  That's it - easy to do, and simple enough that I can do it quickly with minimum keystrokes or mouse clicks, and usually without any hassle at all.  I put all images that I save like this in a special file folder that I can easily recall - I call it "websites" where I have sub-folders for many different websites.  My biggest problem is usually remembering what I named the image a minute or two earlier.

Other genealogists use a more sophisticated snipping tool like Snag-It to do these tasks.  I don't have a special program, I just use the free tools that Windows and LibreOffice provide.  I have the Windows Snipping Tool on my Taskbar at the bottom of my screen where it is one click away.

I hope this helps genealogy bloggers and presenters do these tasks efficiently and simply.  It works for me!

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Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver


Diane Gould Hall said...

Good advice Randy. I use screen prints all the time, pretty much daily. The tool I use is also free and is called FastStone Capture. It captures the whole page or part of the page and you can then edit the image. A very very useful tool, no matter which program you use. I used this tool today to post pictures in my blog post about Mapping your ancestors lives.
Diane aka Michigan Girl

Diane Gould Hall said...

I have a question for you Randy. When I finish my blog post, I want to post it on FB, on several groups I belong to and on my own page. I use the tiny FB icon at the bottom of the post.
However....I would like to use a thumbnail from the current post and only have that option the very first time. Then when I go back to post it on the next FB page or group, I am limited to only a couple of thumbnail pictures.
Have you figured a way around this?

Geolover said...

Using the Pring-screen approach, if you have any PC it originally had the MS Paint program. Open the program, click on the white space and use ctrl+v to paste (or use the Paint menu to do so). Then you can save the image in any of several formats. In paint you can also do a little image editing. It's easy to find with a search of your computer.

Not all word-processing programs permit separately saving a pasted-image.

GeniAus said...

I use the Windows Snipping Tool too. The good news is that it is still there in Windows 8.

SearchShack said...

Randy - I love your explanations! I use Skitch from Evernote for screenshots as it also lets me crop the image and add pointers or borders right while I'm saving the image.