One of my projects at Aviary necessitated generating a static UIImage from a UIView. Fortunately, Quartz makes it really simple to do this. Here’s a quick category on UIView showing how it can be done.

To explain: -createImageFromRect: method generates an image by rendering the portion of the view bounded by “frame” in an image context. Note that CALayer’s -renderInContext: method renders the entire layer tree, creating a flat image from the view hierarchy.

/* implementation UIView (UIImageCreation) */

- (UIImage *)createImageFromRect:(CGRect)frame
    CGContextRef context = UIGraphicsGetCurrentContext();

    CGPoint origin = [self bounds].origin;
    CGPoint offset = frame.origin;

    CGContextTranslateCTM(context, origin.x - offset.x, origin.y - offset.y);

    [[self layer] renderInContext:context];

    UIImage *image = UIGraphicsGetImageFromCurrentImageContext();

    return image;

- (UIImage *)createImage
    return [self createImageFromRect:[self bounds]];

/* end */

Check out the Gist here.