Although math and numbers are not my strong suit, addition and subtraction are skills I use regularly in my clay art and craft projects. A knitting project starts with one slip knot loop that develops into multiple stitches using various wraps of the yarn on two needles. As these factors add up, a garment is created. Subtraction in knitting is always a possibility; I’ve been known to ‘unknit’ or rip back hours of stitching if I’m not satisfied or find a mistake.
Clay creations develop in various added and subtracted layers too. I just installed this dog-themed totem at a South Carolina home. Several new pieces were added to an existing totem I'd created several years ago, replacing some that had taken a beating in a recent hurricane. Clay-making requires addition and subtraction of clay to reach a desired look. Colors of underglaze and glaze are painted on and sometimes wiped away to achieve the desired surface. In some cases, I add other decorative materials after a piece has had its final kiln firing to make it complete.
Adding and subtracting are useful life tools as well. Think about what you'd like to add to your life to make it better. More time with family? Additional career skills to help you move up the corporate ladder? On the flip side, subtracting is important too. Stripping away the negative life impediments will help all of us achieve some balance and make space for what's most important in our daily lives. If only this were as easy as 'frogging' (ripping back) a knitting project and knitting a garment one stitch at a time.