How to Add Text and Arrows to Pictures on PC (The Easy Way)

Check here to know how to instantly add text and arrows to pictures (and screenshots) on a Windows PC without a photo editor program.

If you hate the idea of having to save images on your PC so you can edit them with a photo editor like Paint or Photoshop to add text, or arrows to your pictures, do this instead:

  1. Download Greenshot on the official website and install it.

    (After the installation, Greenshot will run automatically in the background of Windows, so you have the screenshot function available whenever needed.)
  2. Press PrtScn to take a screenshot, then click and hold the mouse button and drag to define the rectangle of your screenshot:
  3. When you finish, a menu will pop out. Select Open in Image Editor:
  4. On the Greenshot Image Editor, utilize the left bar to mark your image, like in the picture below:

As shown below, this is also the easiest way to add text and arrows to pictures on Word.

To add notes and shapes to existing images, open the image on Windows and take a screenshot. It is quicker this way.

(If Windows Photo Viewer can’t display pictures because there is not enough memory, read this article to know how to fix it. )

Next, I will show you what you can do with Greenshot to edit your pictures.

How to use Greenshot to Mark your Images with Text, Arrows, and Shapes on Windows

Here are the tools available on Greenshot to mark images with text, arrows, and shapes, followed by examples.
Greenshot has the following tools to edit your picture:

Add Text (shortcut T): To expand the text box, click and hold your mouse button like you did when taking the screenshot.

In the text settings bar (above the picture), you can select fill color, text color, font size, font type, etc. If you don`t want shadow under your text, click on the Drop shadow icon in the text settings bar:

Draw Arrows (shortcut A): Click and hold your mouse button to decide the direction of your arrow.

In the arrow settings bar above the picture, you can select the thickness of the line and whether your arrow has arrowheads at the start, end, or on both points. You can also drop shadows like in the text version.

Draw Lines (shortcut L):  Click and hold the mouse button to select the direction of your line; hold Shift if you want a perfectly straight line. You can change line thickness and drop shadow in the line settings bar.

Draw Rectangles (shortcut R): Click and hold the mouse button to define the area of your rectangle.

If you want a transparent rectangle or a rectangle filled with color, pay attention to the fill color icon:

Draw Circles (shortcut C): Click and hold the mouse button to define the area of your circle. The fill color, thickness, and drop shadow work precisely in the same way as with the draw rectangle feature.

Obfuscate (shortcut O): Use this to blur text or any part of your picture. You can increase pixel size in the obfuscate settings bar (above the picture) to increase the degree of blurriness.

Add Counter (shortcut I): This is useful if you want to show a step-by-step process. You only need to click on different points, and Greenshot will add the number counters.

Other functions are available, like adding speech bubbles, highlighting, adding effects, cropping, or turning the image clockwise/anti-clockwise.

How to Add Text and Arrows to Pictures in Word

You can add text and arrows to pictures using Word, but it is slower. It will be quicker to do it in Greenshot, then copy the screenshot to the clipboard so you can paste it into Word. It will save you several seconds.

Here is how it works:

  1. Press PrtScn to take a screenshot, then click and hold the mouse button and drag to define the rectangle of the screenshot:
  2. After taking the screenshot, click on Open in Image Editor:
  3. On the Greenshot image editor, add arrows, text, and shapes, as explained in the first part of this article. When you finish it, click on the Copy image to clipboard icon in the upper part of the image editor.
  4. On Microsoft Word, go to where you want to add the picture and paste it there.

Greenshot has a button to add a picture directly to Microsoft Word in the upper bar:

But copying images to the clipboard is quicker, allowing you to paste them to other office programs and even Google Docs.

(If you have problems when launching Acrobat Reader to read PDF files, check this article to learn how to fix Windows cannot find AcroRd32.exe)

If you prefer to do this in Microsoft Word, you can check this video:

Greenshot is the easiest way to add arrows, text and mark your image in Windows.

You need to download Greenshot and install it. Press PrtScn to take a screenshot, and click and hold the mouse button to define the area of your image. A menu will appear, select “Open in image editor”; you can add text and arrows by pressing T and A on your keyboard.

Greenshot is a free screenshot tool with no ads, which takes less than 3MB of disk space.

It is also the fastest way to add text and arrows to pictures in Word/ You can also use it to mark images in other Office programs, Google Docs or Libre Office.

Greenshot is one of the programs on my list of must-have software for Windows. Can you guess the others?

Laerthe Côrtes

Laerthe Côrtes

My first desktop computer, back in the 1990s, opened a whole new world for me; since then I am a heavy PC user (who will never get used to smartphones.) I worked for five years in the PC software industry, and my favorite version of Windows is still Windows 95.

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