SHORTCUT: Create Lock Screens w/ Image & Text Overlay, v2.0

I love the latest features of the iOS Lock Screen. In particular, I often use the Lock Screen widgets. (Aside: The iOS app Shortflow is an inexpensive app that adds some very nice enhancements to the widgets.)

Also, for many years, I’ve overlayed some small and light text on my Lock Screen image that included my wife’s phone number. I’ve never lost my phone, but I like to have this information available just in case I leave it behind somewhere.

Since being a relatively new Pappy, I’ve enjoyed using cute photos of my grandkids on my Lock Screen. Since they are growing fast, I’ve wanted to change the Lock Screen often.

These factors have motivated me to create and share this shortcut.


The primary purpose of this shortcut is to create a Lock Screen photo that includes overlayed text. For example, I use it to include the following text at the bottom of my Lock Screens:

If found, please call 800-555-1212

In my case, I use my wife’s phone number.

The shortcut can optionally create a layered Lock Screen: an image (e.g., a lifted subject from an photo) can be placed over a normally darker background.

The shortcut resizes and positions the overlayed image and/or text. The image scaling can be specified to avoid the area of the Lock Screen that includes widgets.

The created Lock Screen can replace an existing one or be used to create a new one. One advantage of the former is that widgets from the replaced Lock Screen will be retained.


Note that the instructions below might seem complex. That’s because the shortcut can be significantly customized if needed. Most users, and all users initially, will find that the default settings create useful and attractive Lock Screens.

  1. In the Photos app, select a photo that will be the sole image (or background image, in cases when creating a layered Lock Screen). Crop the selection using the WALLPAPER constraint.

  2. If you plan to overlay an image, place it in the Photos app. Optionally edit (i.e., crop, etc.) the image. One option to consider is to lift a subject from a photo (instructions: Lift a subject from the photo or video background on iPhone) and share the lifted image back to the Photos app.

  3. Optionally change values in the two dictionaries found at the top of the shortcut. For example, if you plan to overlay text, you’ll likely want to modify the phoneNo entry in the first dictionary to the number of a spouse or friend. Values in the second dictionary should only be changed after fully understanding the shortcut logic.

  4. Optionally change values in two of the actions within this shortcut: 1) Overlay Image, and 2) Overlay Text. Refer to the comments above the respective actions for more information. These comments include a series of exclamation marks (:exclamation::exclamation::exclamation::exclamation::exclamation::exclamation::exclamation::exclamation::exclamation::exclamation::exclamation:) for easy identification.

  5. Run this shortcut. By default, several prompts will appear guiding you through the process of creating the Lock Screen. (Once you gain familiarity with the shortcut, you’ll find that you can streamline the process by making adjustments within the shortcut settings. Comments within the shortcut provide much more information.)

  6. You’ll have the option to replace an existing Photo Lock Screen or create a new one.

Note: On occasion, a new Lock Screen might appear larger than expected with overlayed text slightly misaligned. In these cases, give the image a small pinch to position it as it was designed to be used.

[ continued on RoutineHub ]

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I’ve updated the OP to Version 2.0 of Create Lock Screens w/ Image & Text Overlay.

  1. Created Lock Screen can create new or replace a selected Lock Screen.

  2. Added settings: mode, newHelp, saveAllNewLockScreens.

  3. Improved the Purpose and Instructions.

  4. Bug Fix: Setting txtType was not functioning as expected due to a typo.