This has long been one of my favorite apps. I use it on a daily basis for a variety of tasks, both Fire Service related and in my personal life. There is no way to cover everything it does or how it can be used in this article, so consider the things you learn here an overview. I encourage you to immediately download the demo. But truly…. this will be the best $49 you have spent on software in a long, long time.
It’s important to understand that Snagit is not a photo editor. Snagit is a screenshot program that also captures video display and audio output and so much more. If you are on a PC or a Macintosh, you already have a basic free screenshot tool. For Windows, you can take a screenshot by pressing the Alt + PrtScn keys; For Macs, it’s Shift + Command + 4. If that’s all you need or want, you don’t need to use Snagit at all. But read on…
Why You Need Snagit
The human brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text. TechSmith’s Snagit makes it easy to leverage brain power by allowing you to quickly and easily add annotated videos and images to your email, training materials, standard operating guidelines, departmental orders, and social media posts.
With Snagit, you can screenshot your entire desktop, a region, a window, or even a scrolling screen. You can even screen capture an image in a horizontal screen scroll. So those infinitely long scrolling web pages, long chat messages, panoramic images and everything in between are no problem for Snagit. Your regular desktop capture app can’t do that.
It’s also a very lightweight and unobtrusive video screen recording
Imagine being able to quickly and easily add annotated visuals for use in your departments SOGs or preplans. Need to update the graphic you created? Not a problem for Snagit. You can either find your original image in the built-in Library or just edit the one you added to your document previously.
As mentioned above, if it is on your computer screen, you can capture it, annotate and output in a variety of formats. You can also import existing images from your desktop into Snagit, annotate them and then save them back to your desktop.
The most common use of Snagit’s screen recorder is to quickly record your desktop and/or your webcam for a detailed step by step demonstration or how to video. Here are just a few of the things you do when creating your video:
- Record a PowerPoint or
Keynotrepresentation switching between the presentation slides and video of the speaker
- Send someone audio and visual feedback in a video
- Record a small portion of an online video or animation
When you are done, you can save your video file as an MPEG-4 or animated GIF.
Include audio in your videos from either a microphone or your computers system audio.
iOS Screen Recorder
The TechSmith Capture App lets you record your iOS screen with just a few taps and instantly share it back into Snagit for trimming.
Grab & Convert To Editable Text
You can screenshot an image, then copy and paste it into another application such as MS Word for editing. Think of how much time you can save by using this tool to grab large captures of text and having it converted to editable text.
Screen Capture Images Library
All your captures are saved into the Snagit Library. Now you can quickly access past screen captures without wasting time digging for them. Tag your captures to keep your projects organized. Tagging will provide you with quick access to the images you are looking for.
You can take separate Snagit image captures and combine them into one, organized piece of content.
Annotate screen grabs with professional markup tools. Add personality and professionalism to your screenshots with a variety of pre-made styles. Or you can create your own.
Automatically make objects in your screen captures movable. Rearrange buttons, delete text, or edit other elements in your screenshots.
Snagit recognizes the text in your screenshots for quick editing. Change the words, font, colors, and size of the text in your screenshots without having to redesign the entire image.
Trim Video Clips
Remove any unwanted sections from your screen recordings. Cut any section at the beginning, middle, or end of your video.
Editor Tools And How Fire Officers Can Use Them.
Use colored arrows to point out important features.
Add any length text you need in a resizable text box. You can choose and customize from a variety of text formats, many of which are designed to help with readability on variable colored backgrounds.
Callout Boxes and Callout Arrows allow you to point to something and add descriptive text to the callout.
Easily add an assortment of colored circles, rectangles
Snagit provides a large set of default stamps (icons) that you can use in your screen capture, including map icons, blueprint icons, vehicle icons and dozens more. You can download additional sets for free. And there is at least one third party company selling a huge collection of stamps and frames for Snagit that you might find worthy to use.
Quickly smart fill a selection or smart selection with any color in the spectrum. In the image below, the white background was filled with a red color.
Use the selection tool to draw around an area, then move, cut, delete, or copy and paste the selection.
The selection tool allows you to select an area of a screen capture that you want to work with. Once selected, you can copy & paste, fill it with a color or perform a variety of other tasks. Be sure to try the snap to object option. Using it, I was able to completely isolate some of the gauges and valves
The magnify tool
The perfect tool for blurring out faces or licenses plates when confidentiality is a concern. There are two different type of blurs available. Both are demonstrated in the images below.
Magic Wand Tool
The magic wand allows you to select portions of an image based on color. Use it to select backgrounds or irregularly shaped spaces. If the initial selection isn’t exactly what you want, adjust the slider to increase or decrease the sensitivity. Then, move, delete, or even copy the selection for use in another image. But remember, this is not a Photoshop replacement. It can handle the simpler
In the image below, the background was removed by using the magic wand several times and then cleaning it up with the eraser tool. I then placed the image on the flame background. All done within Snagit.
Crop the image as needed. Using the cropping tool, in effect, creates a zoomed in image of a larger picture, providing lots more detail. In the image below, the left side represents the cropped version of the map on the right.
The CutOut tool allows you to eliminate unwanted imagery, and to condense the imagery to fit into a tight space. In the example below, I removed a large section of a map, leaving just the start and end points of an event. The ripple effect indicates to the viewer that there is more to the map
Allows you to write and draw in freehand on your screen captures.
Allows you to highlight an area of your screen capture. It does not have to be just text.
This is one tool you cannot do without. Quickly document steps and workflows with a series of numbers that automatically increase as you use them. It allows you to sequentially place numbered icons onto your screenshot indicating steps that need to be taken in a certain order.
The eraser is the opposite of the pen tool. It removes everything underneath the area you draw on. In the image below, I used it to erase all visible references to the department name and unit number. The first image shows you the original, the second is the version with the erased information. The third shows the erased sections “filled” using the fill tool with the same or very similar red color as the surrounding area. So how did I get the colors to match so closely? Well, inside the “fill” tool, there is an eyedropper that lets you sample (define) the color based on the surrounding area. You just click an adjacent colored pixel using the eyedropper tool and poof, you now are ready to paste with that color. Unfortunately, you can see the color on the door is slightly off. That is because I sampled a pixel from above the emblem where the red is a little darker than the bottom of the door. Remember… SnagIt isn’t Photoshop, but it will be just fine for most Fire Officers needs.
Once you’re satisfied with the final product, you can share your creations online to a wide range of services from an FTP to YouTube with just a few clicks. Simply click the “Share” button in the Snagit Editor to view image and video sharing options.
The easiest way to share your media is to send it to Screencast.com. Snagit uploads the image or video and returns a link to you that you can paste in any messaging service or email client. This helps you get around issues where mail services are blocking file attachments or where the file may be too large to include in a message or email.