CompactDraw Basics

Types of Objects

There are four types of objects in CompactDraw: Path, Polynome, Text and Bitmap

1. Path
This is the basic object. You create path anytime you use one of the basic shape objects such as Rectangle,Circle or Star.
Shape is created with Bezier curves and it can be closed or open.

2. Polynome
Polynome is object like Path, however Polynome can have islands in the shape (for example holes). You can't start creating Polynome from scratch, however you can convert any Path or Text to Polynome.

3. Text
The text can be edited any time. You can also apply a Bezier envelope to the text and then twist the object. All the effects apply for text as well as for any objects.

4. Bitmap
Bitmap is non-vector object. You can load most of the major formats. Also you can apply Bezier envelope to twist or distort the bitmap.

Select an Object

If you want to select, move or resize object you use the Object Selector tool
If you want to change the shape by moving the Bezier points you use the Shape Tool

Tip: You can switch between the Selector and Shape Tool with double-click.

With the Object Selector tool you can select an object by clicking on the visible part of the object.
You can resize the object by pulling one of the 8 handles. The bottom right handle (in gray color) is for resizing in all directions, the other 7 handles always resize in their direction. (For example the middle left and right handle will resize only in the horizontal direction)

Tip: Sometimes if the object is very tiny you may have a hard time to select the object. Then hold down Ctrl key and click on the object again. This will select the object by its boundary.

Select more objects at the same time

Many times you would like to select more object at the same time and then move it resize it or apply an command.
To select two or more objects use one of these:

To deselect all objects click outside the selected area. To deselect only one object from the group of selected object hold down SHIFT key and click on already selected object.

Tip: During multiple selections look at the bottom of the screen (the status bar). You will see the text how many objects you have selected.


If you have complex project, you can make selections easier by grouping a related objects together. Select two or more objects and press CTRL-G (or from Menu Object- Group). The group has a double-lined red border. You can move or resize grouped objects. However you can't change the parameters. To ungroup a group press CTRL-U (or from menu Object - Ungroup). You can also remove one or more objects from existing group without ungrouping with Lock option. See more details in Layers.

Object Examples:

Tip: Each object type has a different color of the bounding rectangle in the Selection mode. The Path is blue, Polynome is Green, Text is violet and Bitmap is orange. The multi-object selection has dark blue border and a group is double red.