How to draw shapes

To draw a (poly)line, rectangle, brackets or other shapes use the Insert menu or select the icon from the Tools toolbar.

These icons and objects are depicted in blue color outlines to indicate that any object here does not bear any chemical meaning like reaction arrows or S-group brackets (in black).


images/download/attachments/49196971/parentheses24.png Parenteses

images/download/attachments/49196971/squarebracket24.png Square brackets

images/download/attachments/49196971/braces24.png Braces

images/download/attachments/49196971/chevron24.png Chevron


images/download/attachments/49196971/g-arrow24.png Single Arrow

images/download/attachments/49196971/g-retrosynthetic-arrow24.png Graphical Retrosynthetic Arrow

images/download/attachments/49196971/g-equilibrium-arrow24.png Graphical Equilibrium Arrow

images/download/attachments/49196971/g-curved-arrow24.png Curved Arrow

images/download/attachments/49196971/g-dashed-arrow24.png Dashed Arrow

images/download/attachments/49196971/g-crossed-arrow24.png Crossed Arrow


images/download/attachments/49196971/g-line24.png Line

images/download/attachments/49196971/g-polyline16.png Polyline

images/download/attachments/49196971/g-rectangle24.png Rectangle

images/download/attachments/49196971/g-rounded-rectangle24.png Rounded Rectangle

images/download/attachments/49196971/g-ellipse24.png Ellipse

To draw square/rounded square/circle press SHIFT and use the Rectangle/Rounded Rectangle/Ellipse icon.

Create a graphical object

  1. Select the desired graphical objects from the Tools tool bar or the Insert menu.

  2. Click and hold the left button, move the mouse and release the button.

  3. To create the object click again.

Select a graphical object

Similarly to the structure selection graphical objects can be selected using all selection bottons and shortkey.

Resize/reshape a graphical object

Hovering a graphical object its control points become active and highlighted by blue. Dragging an active control point the object can be reshaped.

Change the style

To change the style (thickness, color) without affecting defaults, right-click on the selected object or objects (they can be of different type) and choose Format... option which opens the Graphic Object Properties dialog.

For more information on settings refer to the relevant chapter of the Graphic Object Properties section.


These changes are identical with those applied to structure. For more information see the Geometric transformation of structure and objects section.

Delete a graphical object

Graphical object can be removed in same ways as structures. These ways are covered in Deleting a Structure section.


Lines look similar to simple single bonds but behave differently:

  • they do not carry chemical meaning

  • crossing lines appear solid, but bonds do not

Lines are defined by their two endpoints. There is also a third one at the midpoint. This control point can be used for change the line into a curve (for controlling the arc angle) or it can be used as joining point to other objects.

If this control point is used to connect two objects, it can be relocated while the other endpoint of the line remains fixed.

Line can be modified not only to curves but to arrows as well using the Format option in the contextual menu.


Curves can be draw changing a line or a curved arrow.

Starting from a line:

  1. Select the midlepoint.

  2. Drag the control point to change the curvature. Alternatively, in the Graphical Object Properties dialog box Arc central angel can be set manually.

  3. Remove the mouse pointer to unselect the curve.

Starting from a line:

  1. Select the curved arrow.

  2. From the contextual menu choose Format....

  3. In the Graphical Object Properties dialog box remove the head in the Line End pane.

Single arrow:

Single arrows are similar to lines.

The type of arrow head, orientation and size can be set in the Graphical Object Properties dialog box

Rectangle/Square - Rounded rectangle/Rounded square

The shape of an object is changeable or resizable by dragging one of its points.


To draw a polyline

  1. Select the Polyline tool images/download/attachments/49196971/g-polyline16.png from the Tools toolbar active.

  2. Use dragging in combination with clicking to draw.

  3. Press Esc or choose an other icon from the toolbar.

Individual middle control points of a polyline can not be moved.