Sometimes the image you want is trapped inside a video. How do you get high quality photos from video files without ending up with something that compromises on picture quality?

It’s always possible to capture a screenshot, but depending on the computer you’re using and the quality of your video, this might not cut it.

Read on to learn how to extract the still photo you want from any video using free tools. There are more options than you might think.

How to Take Pictures From Video: Your Options

If you’re looking to capture a still image from a video, there are a few choices to choose from. Your approach will vary depending on whether you’re using a PC, Mac, Android phone, or iPhone.

Take a screenshot with VLC Media Player(Mac and PC)

  1. Open any video file in VLC
  2. Go to the “Video” dropdown menu and select “Snapshot”
  3. On Windows, this is Shift+S
  4. On Mac, this is Command + Option + S

Capture a Picture from a Video on PC

This section will run through the most common ways to get the image you want from a video on a Windows PC.

1. Snipping Tool

In Windows 10 and 11, the built-in Snipping Tool does a great job of cutting a still image from the video you’re watching, so you don’t even need a third party app.

  1. Open the start menu, search “Snipping Tool” and click the app

  2. Pause your video at the point you would like to capture a picture

  3. Click “new” in the Snipping Tool and drag the selection box over the still image you want

All done! Your picture will now save to a location of your choosing. In a future update of Windows 10, this Snipping Tool will be updated to a similar app called “Snip & Sketch”


Screenshot and Crop

At any time in Windows 10, you can hold down the Windows key + “print screen” to take a screenshot. If you then open this picture in the gallery app, you’ll be able to crop out the image you want from the still in your video.


For Google Chrome, there are plenty of third party apps, but the Video Screenshot Extension allows you to quickly and easily get the picture you want from a video.

Simply install the extension through Chrome and click the new button that appears on your video. This will extract a high-quality image and save it to a location of your choosing.


Save a Still Picture from a Video on Mac

Your options for saving the frame you want from a video are a little different on a Mac, but they’re just as simple.


Mac users also have access to a handy built-in screenshot feature that does a great job of saving a still frame from a video.

  1. Search the word “screenshot” in Spotlight and open the app
  2. Click and drag the crop box over the frame you want in the video
  3. Click “capture”

That’s it! Your frame can now be saved to a location of your choosing. Mac users can also press shift+control+5 to open this app at any time.

Extract a Video Frame With Safari

The Safari screenshot extension is a premium option for users to capture photo from a video on any pages they’re visiting.

  1. Pause the video you want to capture a frame from
  2. Click the safari extension to save a screenshot that includes your frame
  3. Crop the captured image so it includes only the frame you want

You’re finished! Your frame is now saved and ready to go.

Capture an image with iMovie

  1. Open iMovie and load your video file
  2. Pause the video in iMovie at the frame you want to convert to a still
  3. Open the File dropdown menu and go to Share => Image
  4. Choose a file name and save it wherever you want


If you need to save a photo from a video while using an Android phone, there are a few options available.

Android App

There are number of app options for saving a photo from a video. This app from the Play Store makes it quick and easy. Simply choose a video from your device that you’d like to save a photo from and in a few short taps, you’ll have the photo you need.

  1. Open the app and choose a video from your phone
  2. Decide whether you need a range of images or just one photo
  3. Tap save

You now have the photo you wanted grabbed right from your video!


Screen Capture

Android phones come with a built-in screen capture function that can be used to save a still image from a video.

Hold down the power button and volume down button simultaneously to snap the frames you need. Use your phone’s image editor to crop out any unwanted elements from your screenshot.


If you use an iPhone, there is a really neat nice third party app that you can use to capture an image from videos.

Video to Photo

Video to Photo is a free iOS app that automatically pulls videos from your camera roll into the app. Then you can save a single image from any frame in the video and the app will save the new image in the same resolution as the video.

Check it out here

Grab a screenshot

Newer iPhones have Retina displays, which means the native screen resolution is quite high. You can just take a screenshot on a paused video frame and you’ll still end up with a really decent photo.


What if the options above don’t quite cut it? There are several web-based solutions you can use to take photos from a video online. One great example is Kapwing. Kapwing is an online video converter that can change the file format of your video.

  1. Navigate to the Kapwing video converter
  2. Upload or paste a link to your video
  3. Pause the video on your chosen frames, choose “JPEG” and click download

After following these steps, the video convertor will extract and grab an image from your video to be saved in a location of your choosing.

Kapwing is just one example of online video converters like this. Feel free to search around and find an option that works for you. Kapwing happens to have an easy-to-use UI and simple controls, but other sites are available.



Sometimes the right images are trapped in an online video. Hopefully, this article has made it clear that it’s refreshingly easy to get the content you need from videos online. Usually, a simple screen grab is enough to get the photo you need.

Remember that your options will vary depending on the system you’re using. Both Mac and Windows computers make it easy to capture images, but the approach is slightly different on each system. Always make sure you’re allowed to take images from the videos you’re using.