How to Change the Desktop Wallpaper Background in MacOS

Jul 27, 2021 - Leave a Comment

How to Change the Desktop Wallpaper Backround in MacOS

Do you want to change the desktop background on your Mac? Perhaps, you don’t like the default macOS wallpaper or you just want to use a custom image of your choice as the background? Fortunately, this is pretty easy to do on a macOS machine.

If this is your first Mac and you’re switching from a Windows PC, chances are, you’ll need some time to get a hang of macOS. Even simple things like changing the background wallpaper to personalize your desktop could be a little tricky at first. The good news is that the procedure is not too different from what you are probably used to on Windows machines.

There are a few ways to change the background on a Mac. You can either change it from System Preferences or you can simply select any image file and set it as a custom wallpaper. Let’s cover these methods to change the desktop wallpaper picture in macOS.

Changing the Desktop Wallpaper Background Picture in MacOS via System Preferences

Simply follow the steps below to get started.

  1. First, head over to “System Preferences” on your Mac from the Dock.

    How to Change the Desktop Wallpaper Backround in MacOS
  2. This will open a new window on your screen. Here, click on “Desktop & Screen Saver” to change your background.

    How to Change the Desktop Wallpaper Backround in MacOS
  3. If you want to use one of Apple’s stock wallpapers, you can select the “Desktop Pictures” folder from the left pane. Now, click on any of the wallpapers shown here and your desktop background will automatically change.

    How to Change the Desktop Wallpaper Backround in MacOS

The default wallpaper collections of macOS are pretty nice.

If you have a folder of pictures, you can drag and drop that folder into the preference panel to easily add those pictures to your desktop background wallpaper options too.

Changing the Mac Desktop Wallpaper Background Picture via Finder

You can also change the desktop wallpaper via Finder.

  1. If you’re more interested in using a custom picture as the desktop background, you’ll need to first locate the image file using Finder. Click on the “Finder” icon located in the Dock.

    How to Change the Desktop Wallpaper Backround in MacOS
  2. Browse and find the image using Finder and Control-click (right-click) on the file. Now, click on “Set Desktop Picture” and you’re good to go.

    How to Change the Desktop Wallpaper Backround in MacOS

That’s all you need to do.

Now you know how easy it is to change the desktop background on your new Mac, whether by System Preferences, or through a file.

While doing this, you may have noticed that there are different kinds of wallpapers like Dynamic Desktop and Light & Dark Desktop under Apple’s stock wallpaper collection. The Light and Dark desktop wallpapers can change your desktop background automatically depending on whether you’re using Light appearance or Dark appearance on your Mac.

On the other hand, Dynamic Desktop wallpapers are even more interesting. These wallpapers gradually shift based on the time of the day. For example, at noon, your Mac will display the bright version of the wallpaper whereas at night, it will automatically shift to the dark version of the same. You can learn how to enable dynamic desktop on your Mac here, but this feature requires macOS Mojave or later.

Do you use an iPhone or iPad as your primary mobile device? In that case, you may also be interested in learning how to change the lock screen and home screen wallpapers on your iOS and iPadOS devices, especially if you’re new to the Apple ecosystem.

Did you use one of Apple’s stock wallpapers or did you set a custom image as your Mac’s background? What’s your take on Dynamic Desktop wallpapers? Do share your valuable opinions and experiences in the comments section down below.


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Posted by: Hamlin Rozario in Mac OS, Tips & Tricks

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