Converting Compound Shape to regular Path

I am working with an image in Adobe Illustrator CS. I'm tracing an image by using the path tool - most of it is geometric and it's not difficult, but I wind up with a lot of different paths / shapes because there are several different shapes in the image.

I have some pieces that are "Paths" and some that are "Compound Shapes". When I need to delete a segment of line between two points, it will work on the "Paths", but when I delete it on the "Shapes" the path disappears but the line between the two points is still drawn, I assume to ensure the shape is closed.

My question is this: Since I drew all these parts the same way, why are some of them Paths and others Shapes? Also, how can I convert the Shapes to Paths so that I can delete segments and not preserve the whole shape?

This is regular CS - not CS 2, 3 or 4 (I know I am behind a bit!).


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difficult to judge what you are looking at, but I assume that you have these fragments as you draw your shapes without these being joined.

You could try first of all to zoom into the end points of two segments and JOIN the 2 elements using Object|Path >Join or CTRL+J. This may require a little cleaning up if the endpoints don't align but you can build a full shape that way.

You can use the Direct Selection Tool to adjust your endpoints if you don't want to move the segments with the Object Picker to make them fit.

This all should work in normal CS.

if you get stuck it may help if you upload the file (change ext to TXT) and we can have a look at it and advise further...especially with compound paths...


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briandeanAuthor Commented:
Thank you! This was a great help. I got it to work, finally :)
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