I'm using Photoshop and Inkscape.

  1. I have a circle shape.
  2. Based on a grid, I want to generate say thousand other smaller shapes that fill that circle nicely (and perhaps without gaps).
  3. I want those smaller shapes to be vector and separately selectable.

How do I do that? I can’t do it without automation because the number of smaller shapes can be large. For a small number of filler shapes I could use masks.

enter image description here

  • 1
    Something like this? It's not banal. Can you tell us something more about your efforts? Jan 3, 2018 at 11:16
  • @PaoloGibellini Yes. Something like that. I've already tried patterns, but they're not vector or separated objects. I can't do it without automation because the number of smaller shapes can be large. For small number of filler shapes I can use Masks.
    – mrmowji
    Jan 3, 2018 at 11:24
  • You can also use an external tool (like the one pointed here)to generate the SVG and then edit it (e.g. substituting circles with other objects). Or you can generate a Voronoi diagram and fill the cells. Jan 3, 2018 at 14:50
  • I've already tried patterns, but they're not vector or separated objects – They are clones but you can unlink them to obtain separate objects. It’s hard to say whether this suffices for your needs without more details. Please edit your question to tell us what you want to achieve.
    – Wrzlprmft
    Jan 13, 2018 at 10:32
  • @Wrzlprmft Please see my edit.
    – mrmowji
    Jan 13, 2018 at 14:29

1 Answer 1

  1. Suppose this is your shape:


  2. Create a single square of your desired size:

    After Step 2

  3. Activate Snapping (%) and Snap to Cusp Nodes.

  4. Duplicate your square (Ctrl + D).

  5. Drag the duplicate to touch the original in exactly one corner (it should snap):

    After Step 5

  6. Duplicate both squares; drag the duplicates to form a checkerboard pattern; duplicate all four squares; drag; duplicate; … Soon you should have your entire object covered:

    After Step 6

  7. Combine all squares (Ctrl + K).

  8. Select your squares and then your object.

  9. Intersection (Ctrl + *):

    After Step 9

  10. Break apart (Ctrl + Shift + K). You can now manipulate your individual shapes separately.

Now, obviously that only half the battle, but it’s more instructive to do this once first. To get your real result change the above as follows:

  • After Step 7, duplicate your combined squares and move the duplicate squares to fill the gaps of the other ones, i.e., such that the whole shape is covered.

  • Duplicate your original shape.

  • Perform Steps 8 to 10 twice, once with the original squares and shape and once with the duplicates. To avoid confusion, I recommend to have a separate layer for each of the two iterations, so you can hide while you perform the other one. Alternatively, use separate colours for each object.

  • Great. To get my grid, after step 7 I converted the combined squares to strokes by Path > Stroke To Path. Then at step 9 I used Difference instead of Intersection.
    – mrmowji
    Feb 5, 2018 at 4:35

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