I created dozens and dozens of odd shapes in Adobe Illustrator by drawing lots of overlapping rectangles. Then I did Select All, and used Pathfinder->Unite to turn them into polygons. Now I have a bunch of polygons, true, but as a side-effect, they were combined into one single object.
Is there a way to either
- Unite all my original rectangles, but keeping non-contiguous shapes as separate objects?
- Automatically separate the resulting single non-contiguous object into a bunch individual (contiguous) objects?
I know about the Shape Builder Tool. I know that I could use it to painstakingly build individual merged shapes, one by one, instead of using Select All, and then using Pathfinder->Unite. I know I could enter polygons in the first place, but I need the rectangle representation, and it is faster and more reliable to draw rectangles. (I am sort-of "rotoscoping" a high-tech "Manhattan geometry" design).
The problem is that there a hundred-or-so of these shapes, they are irregular and close to each other, thus hard to select. It would be very time-consuming (and error-prone) to apply Pathfinder or Shape Builder to every single group of overlapping rectangles. And my next design is even bigger.