You can easily download your photos and videos from iCloud to your Mac, Windows computer, or external hard drive. You can do this directly from the Photos app or from icloud.com. Before you start, you need to be signed into iCloud, and iCloud Photos needs to be turned on. If you’re using the Photos app, you’ll need to make sure your Mac is updated to macOS Yosemite or later and check Preferences to make sure iCloud Photos is turned on. If you’re using icloud.com, make sure your web browser is up to date.
Download from Photos App
To download copies of your photos and videos from the Photos app on your Mac, first select your photos or videos. To select multiple photos, just hold the Command key and click which ones you want. Then click File in the menu bar, go to Export, then choose how you’d like to download your photos or videos. If you want to download them as they were originally captured or imported, choose Unmodified Originals. To download versions, including any edits you’ve made, you can just click Export Photos or Videos. Now choose the destination, like a new folder or external hard drive. Then click Export.
Download from iCloud.com
You can also download photos and videos directly from icloud.com. Go to icloud.com, then Photos, and select the photos and videos you want. Now click and hold the Download icon in the upper-right corner of the window. Then either click download Unmodified Originals, or if you want to download edited content, click Most Compatible. You’ll see your photos and videos in your Downloads folder by default as a zip file.
No matter how you choose to download, iCloud always keeps a full-resolution copy in iCloud.