What Gets Bigger The More You Take Away

“What gets bigger the more you take away?” is a popular riddle, but the answer might surprise you! Discover the clever answer and improve your analytical thinking skills with this fun brain teaser.

What Gets Bigger The More You Take Away


Have you ever heard the riddle, ‘What gets bigger the more you take away?’ It’s a puzzling question that has been asked for generations. In this article, we will explore this riddle and discuss the answer in detail.

Defining the Riddle

Before we begin, let’s first define what the riddle means. Essentially, the question is asking us to think of something that becomes larger or more substantial, even as its constituent parts are removed.

Exploring the Answer

So, what is the answer to this riddle? The answer is ‘a hole’. As you remove dirt, debris, or any other material from a hole, the hole itself becomes larger and more pronounced. The more you take away, the bigger the hole becomes.

Examining the Concept

While the answer might seem straightforward, there is a deeper concept at play here. The riddle plays on the idea of negative space, where the ‘thing’ we’re looking at isn’t defined by the substance around it, but rather by the absence of that substance.

Practical Examples

There are many practical examples of negative space and holes in the real world. For instance, take a look at a piece of Swiss cheese. As you remove sections of cheese, the holes in the cheese become larger and more numerous.


So, the answer to the riddle ‘What gets bigger the more you take away?’ is a hole. While it might seem like a simple answer, it is actually quite profound when we consider the concept of negative space and the role it plays in defining the things around us.


Q. Why is the concept of negative space important?

Negative space is important because it helps us to define the things around us. Without negative space, everything would be the same size and shape, and there would be no way to distinguish one thing from another.

Q. Can you think of any other examples of negative space?

Yes, there are many other examples of negative space. Some common examples include the spaces between letters in a word, the empty spaces in a painting, and the holes in a donut.

Q. What is the opposite of negative space?

The opposite of negative space is positive space. Positive space refers to the actual objects or substances in a composition, while negative space refers to the empty spaces around those objects.

Q. Are there any practical applications of negative space?

Yes, negative space can be used in many types of design and art, including graphic design, photography, and sculpture. By manipulating negative space, artists and designers can create interesting compositions that draw the viewer’s eye.

Q. How can I improve my understanding of negative space?

The best way to improve your understanding of negative space is to study examples and practice creating your own compositions. Look for examples of negative space in everyday life, and try creating your own designs using negative space as a primary element.

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