How to programmatically set image to UIImageView or NSImageView in Xcode?

Here is how to programmatically set image to UIImageView in Xcode,

Step 01: In your Xcode project in storyboard drag UIImageView from object library (located at Xcode right utilities sidebar). Give it definite size & now note down it’s size on paper to create same size image in you choice of image editor.

Step 02: Connect UIImageView to respective header file with name e.g. imageView

Your code will look something like this:


@property (strong) IBOutlet NSImageView *imageView; // Code for OSX App


@property (strong, nonatomic) IBOutlet UIImageView *imageView; // Code for iOS App

Step 03: Now import image to current Xcode project with @1x, @2x, @3x (or may be @4x in future). You can Xcode’s inbuilt ‘Image Assets’ catalogue also.

Stpe 04: No in your selected function put below code. I assume that image you imported to your project it’s name is “coloured-image”


[_imageView setImage: [NSImage imageNamed:@"coloured-image"]]; // Code for OSX App


[_imageView.image = [UIImage imageNamed:@"coloured-image"]]; // Code for iOS App

Now build & run your project on your iOS Device, Mac or in your simulator. Your image should appear in the respective view.

Thanks & Regards
Mandar Apte

Mandar Apte

This website contains a design articles blog by Mandar Apte. He writes and shares his iOS development, graphic, web, & animation film design experience through articles. Mandar is Mumbai based multi-disciplinary designer with expertise in UI, UX, Logo, Symbol, and Brand Identity design. He is an alumnus of Sir J. J. Institute of Applied Art, Mumbai. He currently runs his studio in the heart of the city of Mumbai.

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