Skip to main content

How to use the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad

How to remove location data from photos on your iPhone
How to remove location data from photos on your iPhone (Image credit: iMore)

A few iOS releases back, Apple introduced a Markup editor in the Photos app. The Markup editor can be access in the Photos app on both iPhone and iPad, and it allows you to draw on photos, highlight specific areas with callouts, add text for fun captions, and more. Here's how to get the most out of the Markup editor in the Photos app, without ever having to download a third-party app!

How to access the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad

Though you can draw on photos and video inside Messages for spur-of-the-moment fun, you can also access a more thorough Markup editor from the Photos app itself. (Just for images, unfortunately — there are no tools available for video at this time.)

  1. Launch Photos from your home screen.
  2. Tap the Photos tab in the lower-left corner of the screen.
  3. Select the photo you want to edit.
  4. Tap Edit.

Automatically crop photos in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Launch Photos, tap the photo you want to edit, tap Edit (Image credit: iMore)
  1. Tap the More (…) button.
  2. Tap Markup.

Access the Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Tap Edit, tap the More ... button, tap Markup (Image credit: iMore)

You can now add doodles, callouts, and text to your photos.

How to draw on your photos with the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad

Once you're in the Markup editor, the fun begins.

  1. Tap your preferred drawing tool along the bottom. Your options include a pen, a highlighter, and a pencil. There is also an eraser.
  2. Tap the color picker circle to the right to choose a color for your drawing tool (except eraser).
  3. Begin doodling on your photo.

How to draw on your photos with the Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Tap your drawing tool, choose a color from the picker, then draw (Image credit: iMore)

How to change the thickness of your drawing tool in the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad

Want a thinner or thicker line? Here's how to go about doing it.

  1. Tap your preferred drawing tool along the bottom if not already chosen.
  2. Tap your drawing tool again to bring up the sizes for that tool.
  3. Select the thickness of your paintbrush, as well as color opacity.

How to change the thickness of your drawing tool in the Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Tap twice on your preferred drawing tool, then choose the thickness and color opaci (Image credit: iMore)

How to make a callout in the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad

If you want to highlight a specific aspect of your photo, you can add a callout. Here's how!

  1. While in Markup mode, tap the plus + button, located in the bottom right corner.
  2. Select Magnifier.
  3. Touch and drag the callout to highlight any aspect of your image.
  4. To adjust the size, touch and slide the blue dot alongside the callout circle.
  5. To adjust the magnification of the callout, touch and slide the green dot alongside the callout circle.

How to make a callout in the Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Tap the Plus button, tap Magnifier, touch and drag the circle to highlight any aspect of the image (Image credit: iMore)
  1. To change the color of your callout, just tap on the color you want to use from the color menu at the bottom. There is also a color picker if you want to use a non-standard color.

How to make a callout in the Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Tap a color at the bottom to change the callout color, or tap on the picker to select a different color (Image credit: iMore)

How to add text to a photo in the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad

Need to add a funny caption to your photo? You're in luck: Markup offers text addition, too.

  1. While in Markup mode, tap the plus + button, located in the bottom right corner.
  2. Tap Text.
  3. Drag the blue handles at the ends of the box to make it larger, and touch and drag the entire box to move it around.

How to add text to a photo in Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Tap the Plus button, tap Text, touch and drag blue handles to adjust size, or touch and drag the box to move (Image credit: iMore)
  1. Double-tap the text to go into editing mode, and type in the text you want.
  2. Tap a color at the bottom if you want to change it — there is also a color picker if the color you want isn't in the standard options.
  3. Tap anywhere outside the text box to finish.

How to add text to a photo in Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: after inputting your text, tap a color at the bottom to change, or use the color picker if your color isn't a (Image credit: iMore)

How to change the font face in the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad

  1. Tap the Font button in the lower-left corner (it has two As on it).
  2. Tap Helvetica, Georgia, or Noteworthy to select a font face.

How to change text alignment in the Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Tap the font button, tap the font you want (Image credit: iMore)

How to change font size in the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad

  1. Tap the Font button in the lower-left corner (it has two As on it).
  2. Move the slider to adjust your font size.

How to change text alignment in the Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Tap the font button, slide to get the size you want for the text (Image credit: iMore)

How to change text alignment in the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad

  1. Tap the Font button in the lower-left corner (it has two As on it).
  2. Tap the text alignment you would like (left, center, right, or justified) in the resulting menu.

How to change text alignment in the Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Tap the Font button, tap the alignment you want (Image credit: iMore)

How to undo or redo a move in the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad

Made a mistake in your markup? You can quickly undo it with the tap of a button. Just tap the curved arrow to the left if you want to undo, and you can do this as many times as necessary. To redo, just tap the curved arrow to the right.

Undo or redo a move in the Markup editor in Photos on iPhone and iPad by showing steps: Tap the curved arrow going left to undo, tap the curved arrow going right to redo. Repeat as necessary (Image credit: iMore)

Questions?

Want to know something else about the Markup editor in the Photos app on iPhone and iPad? Let us know in the comments!

Updated August 2020: Updated for the latest versions of iOS.

Christine Chan
Christine Chan

Christine Romero-Chan has been writing about technology, specifically Apple, for over a decade at a variety of websites. She is currently the iMore lead on all things iPhone, and has been using Apple’s smartphone since the original iPhone back in 2007. While her main speciality is the iPhone, she also covers Apple Watch, iPad, and Mac when needed.

When she isn’t writing about Apple, Christine can often be found at Disneyland in Anaheim, California, as she is a passholder and obsessed with all things Disney, especially Star Wars. Christine also enjoys coffee, food, photography, mechanical keyboards, and spending as much time with her new daughter as possible.