How to use and find dynamic Mac wallpapers, make your own, more

Dynamic Mac wallpapers first arrived with macOS Mojave in 2018. Now with macOS Big Sur, there are more built-in dynamic options than ever before. Let’s look at how to set dynamic Mac wallpapers, find additional ones online, make your own, and more.

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Here’s how Apple describes dynamic Mac wallpapers:

Dynamic desktop pictures can automatically change throughout the course of the day based on your current location. If Location Services is turned off in Privacy preferences, the picture changes based on the time zone specified in Date & Time preferences.

With macOS Big Sur, there are seven built-in dynamic wallpapers to choose from along with six more that can automatically shift between light and dark.

Below we’ll also look at how to find more dynamic options online and even make your own.

How to use dynamic Mac wallpapers

Built-in options

  • On your Mac, open System Preferences
  • Choose Desktop and Screensaver (top left)
  • At the top, you’ll find the seven dynamic options
    • After choosing one, near the top click the drop-down to set it to Dynamic
  • Just below the dynamic wallpapers, you’ll find the six light/dark options with auto switching

How to find and make dynamic Mac wallpapers

If you download a dynamic wallpaper from the web, you can right-click on the image and choose Set Desktop Picture. Here are a variety of options to get more dynamic wallpapers:

  • Dynamic Wallpaper Club – originally launched with macOS Mojave, this is a nice resource to browse, download, create, and share dynamic wallpapers
  • 24 Hour Wallpaper – available on the web and as a Mac app
    • You can get three free dynamic wallpapers on the website, with more available from $1.29, the Mac app runs $9.99 and comes with 90+ dynamic wallpapers
  • Dynaper for Mac – You can use Dynaper app for free (with watermarks) to make your own dynamic Mac wallpapers. In-app purchases available to remove watermarks
  • Alternatively, learn more about how dynamic Mac wallpapers work and build your with this open-source GitHub resource

Another wallpaper resource

If you’re curious about more wallpaper resources, this won’t offer dynamic ones, but the Unsplash Wallpapers app for Mac is a great way to shuffle through and browse beautiful new desktop images for free.

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Avatar for Michael Potuck Michael Potuck

Michael is an editor for 9to5Mac. Since joining in 2016 he has written more than 3,000 articles including breaking news, reviews, and detailed comparisons and tutorials.