How to Extract Images From PDF – Portable Document File

I recently got a PDF file through email that had a bunch of great images. That I wanted to extract as separate JPEG files. So that I could upload them to my site. There are multiple ways to grab an image out of a PDF and the best way really depends on what tools you have installed on your system. We are going to talk about How to Extract Images From PDF – Portable Document File. Let’s begin!

In this article, I am going to go through the easiest ways I could figure out to capture an image from a PDF file. I am going to start with the most basic methods. That does not require any paid or third-party software. And then also show you how it can be done in Adobe Acrobat Pro and Adobe Photoshop if you have those installed.

Use a Dedicated PDF Reader to Extract Images From PDF

Image extraction from a PDF is a cakewalk if you have the professional version of Adobe Acrobat. It allows you to extract a single image or multiple images within just a couple of clicks.  I will refer you to the official Adobe Acrobat help page that shows you how to export a PDF to other formats.

But, I am guessing most of us do not have the professional version. That is not a piece of bad news at all.

Some alternative PDF readers like the Nitro PDF Reader (Pro) also have this feature. But, who pays money for a PDF reader right? Let us check out how we can take out images for free.

The Quick & Dirty Way with the Free Adobe Reader DC. When you have just one or few images to extract, try this shortcut on the free version of the Adobe Reader:

  • Right-click the document and choose Select Tool from the pop-up menu.
  • Then drag to select the text or click to select an image.
  • Right-click the selected item and choose Copy. The image is now on your clipboard.

Alternatively: Use the Snapshot tool.

  • Choose Edit > Take A Snapshot.
  • Drag a rectangle around the area you want to copy and then release the mouse button.
  • Press the Esc key to exit Snapshot mode. The image is now on your clipboard.

Adobe Acrobat Pro to Extract Images From PDF

There is definitely a lot of you who have Adobe Acrobat Pro installed. It is a lot easier to get all images out of a PDF at once. To do this, open Adobe Acrobat Pro DC and open the desired PDF file. Next, click on Tools and you will see a bunch of icons, but the one you want to click on is Export PDF.

On the left, you will see a small thumbnail image of the first page of the PDF document. And on the right you will see a bunch of options for exporting the file. Click on Image, click on the file format you want and then check the Export all images box.

Click on the Export button and you will get another dialog where you have to choose the location for the exported image files. A default folder is selected, but you can change the location by clicking on the Choose a Different Folder button.

When you click on the folder, a Save As dialog will pop up and you have to give the image a name. The filename for each image will use whatever you type in as the base name followed by the page number and image number, i.e. CatPics_Page_1_Image0001.jpg.

Adobe Photoshoot to Extract Images From PDF

If you have Photoshop installed instead of Acrobat Pro, then it is also very easy to extract all the images. Using Adobe Photoshop feels like launching a space shuttle to grab a weather balloon. But, if you are a creative designer then this Adobe giant must be a habit already. The process is as simple – open a PDF document with Adobe Photoshop. The Import PDF dialog box appears.

Select Images instead of Pages. You can also select the images you want to extract. Click OK and then save (or edit) the image as you would normally do. Adobe Illustrator and CorelDraw also offer a similar functionality. If you use this approach, then you can easily extract an image and also bring it over to another desktop publishing program.

Windows Snipping Tool to Extract Images From PDF

The built-in Windows snipping tool is invaluable for capturing screenshots or parts of the screen. It is hidden within Windows yet offers a lot of utility for anyone who works with images.

Or, any other screenshot tool. Sounds obvious, does not it? But, you, like so many people, miss this obvious tool hidden in Windows 10, Windows 8.1, and Windows 7.

  • Select the Start button. Type Snipping Tool in the search box on the Taskbar. Then, select Snipping Tool from the list of results.
  • Then click on Mode. Choose from Free-form, Rectangular, Window, or Full-screen Snip. For free-form or rectangular snips, use your mouse to select the area that you want to capture.
  • Use the Save and Copy buttons to save it to the desktop or send it to the clipboard.

The Snipping Tool is a quick stab. Sometimes, we want a large excavator that is also free. Turn to a software.

Extract Images From PDF Using Screenshots

The first method require taking a screenshot of the image in the PDF file. Obviously, this method is only useful if you need to capture a small number of images from a PDF file.

You can either use a third-party screen capture utility. If you already have one installed or you can use the built-in screen snipping tool in Windows 7 and higher or screen capture shortcuts in OS X. On both operating systems, you can capture just a portion of your screen using the built-in features of the OS.


Alright, That was all Folks! I hope you guys like this Extract Images From PDF article and find it helpful to you. Give us your feedback on it. Also if you guys have further queries related to this article. Then let us know in the comments section below. We will get back to you shortly.

Have a Great Day!

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