An Easy macOS Script for Converting Images to PDFs

a sheaf of contracts

One of the great conveniences about modern smartphone cameras is that it’s now much easier to submit paperwork of various types. Even if you don’t have a digital copy of the form, you can frequently fill it out, take a picture, and send the photo a long.

Except, as David Sparks explains in this handy post, it’s not quite that easy: images aren’t great to work with, and need to be converted to PDFs. And they typically have a lot of extraneous information, such as color. macOS has a variety of tools to handle this, but it can be annoying or time-consuming to do that by hand. And plus, if you do it by hand, there’s always a chance you’ll forget a step.

Sparks uses this example as a way to introduce macOS’s Automator and its control over Mac Services. He shows how to link a couple of pre-built Mac workflows (“turn images into a single PDF” and “apply quartz filter”) to take a bunch of images, turn them into a PDF, and then make them black-and-white. And because it’s a MacSparky post, it’s clearly documented with screenshots. This is a good way to ease into Mac automation, and even if you don’t want to automate anything yourself, it’s a convenient workflow to have at a right click. Read the whole thing!

Do you have a favorite Automator script? Let us know in comments!

Photo “Contracts” by Flickr user Nobmouse / Creative Commons licensed BY-2.0

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