Anyone? I have tried messing around with shapebuilder and pathfinder. There has got to be a way to do it.
Select all without the circle in front and Copy (Ctrl + C).
Make sure the puzzle pieces have fill color. From your image I can't tell if they have a white fill or none. If none, add a fill color.
Select all and in the Pathfinder panel click the Crop button (4th in the bottom row)
Ungroup (Shift + Ctrl + U)
Paste Behind (Ctrl + B)
If you like select each cut piece of the circle and the puzzle piece behind it and Group them (Ctrl + G)
if using a mac use the corresponding keys.
edit: Hi Jongware,
looks like a cool script
> We will see if my computer explodes with the 25 by 20 foot 500 piece puzzle I need to make.
Here's how it works -- you might need to know that. The bulk of the script creates the random puzzle pieces. It was a bit of fun trying to make each part just a bit different while still keeping a coherent single piece -- too much derivation of the default shape, and you might get a broken off corner. After the hard work is done, it copies *the entire artwork* into each of the pieces ... (they are used as clipping masks).
That means that if your artwork consists of 10MB of vector artwork, dividing it up into "500" pieces, your document will actually contain 500 complete copies and thus swell to a formidbl.. fromibad ... grand total of 5GB!
Your system might be able to deal with such a size, but if not: create the main jigsaw pieces using a blank rectangle, and then go over each of them with the pathfinder, so all excess objects are discarded. ... Times 500, that is.
Thanks for all the help Jongware. Your script is definitely getting me a lot closer to where I need to be.
The problem I am having now is all of those invisible copies that the script leaves behind. The design I am placing on top of the piece is eventually going to be engraved by a CNC machine which interprets all vectors lines (invisible or not) as something it should cut.
You can't see the design under there- but it basically consists of a bunch of overlapping trapazoids. I can't find a way to delete the transparent copies without also affecting the visible clipping masks. I have tried things such as locking all of the visible design with select>object>color and then deleting the invisible shapes, but will delete anything.
Is there anything I could do to prevent the script from saving the rest of the empty clipping mask objects?
Try and see what the Pathfinder can produce? I know it has a "cut objects below" function hidden somehwere.
Have you tried using the Direct Selection tool, then selecting one of the 'invisible' objects and Select > Same Fill and Stroke and then deleting?
Yes, unfortunately this also cuts the mask. Is there any way I can take just save a path kind of like you would save a selection in photoshop and apply it to a different object or group? For example, if I had an outline of a star, is there a way I could essentially "stamp" that path into a filled rectangle and pull out the star? I realize that can easily be done with pathfinder, but it doesn't seem to work when done on a group of objects. Any way around that?