Is it possible to use a shape to define a selection area?

I have a massive group of components that i want to use to create a simple shape.
For example, I want to make a giant star out of a hundreds of smaller stars.
The easiest way is to create an array and then remove the components that don’t make the star shape. However,
the selection tool is only rectangular, and there are so many stars that it will take a long time to sit there and select them individually. Is there a plug in out there that can allow you to use a shape as a selection tool? Or am i just doing it wrong?
I would really appreciate some help. Searched high an low on line, with no luck.

Using Select-tool with a Fence only includes what is within the drawn fence - either wholly or partially - depending on the direction of the fence’s strat>end drag [left>right / right>left]
To remove things from a selection hold Shift+Ctrl and reselect using a fence, or even a simple pick etc…
That way it’s possible to construct a selection that is an odd shape - like a star…

Thanks for the reply. Yes, I am pretty familiar with that process. I was really hoping that i could use a shape to define the selection field as there are many many small shapes. So even with this process it would take a long to do that. To make matters worse i use Thea and had defined the components as external proxies so every time i select a proxy one or a hundred there is a big delay. I downloaded Selection Toys thinking there was some way to use that, but i dont think so.
The large shape is actually composed of 9 different components, as i said, saved as proxies. I suppose i could start over, but not make them proxies, and then use Section toys to select the instances of each component and then convert to a proxy?
Im going to give it a shot. If you say there’s not other way to select the components/proxies then i am sure you are correct. Thanks again.
best RP

If the pattern is symmetrical, create one “facet” of the pattern and then rotate-copy the “facet”. (Look at how a starfish is segmented.)

Thanks for your response. That would work really well if its a star…sadly its not but it does have some symmetry, not perfectly but it will reduce the work.

Just a thought… you could use Skatter. Define the shape as a group, then the repeating element in a second group. Skatter does an awesome job of placing randomly, or in an ordered fashion.

Hi Aaron,
that doesnt solve all my problems but thats a good idea- i’ve ben looking at skatter.

Hi Aaron,
Too bad, demo wont download on my mac.
I’ll try it some other time-
TIG- i did try to do this without the proxys, using sketchup components (i even made a box proxy to and hid the geometry on another layer) even worse.
I guess just have to sweat it out.

give @jiminybillybob a ping about that…

he may be lurking…


Have a look at Sam D Mitch’s Select by Polygon.
You’ll find his page here.

Try here :
Let me know if you have any other issue :

(John, thanks for the heads up)

Hi Jiminybillbob,
Thanks thats great- cant wait to try it!
this forum is way more effective than i imagined.
Box- thanks for the tip, there’s alot of great plugins there.

Hi Jiminybillbob,
Thanks, Scatter is great!