Can You Use Oil Paint Straight Out of the Tube?

Arts & Crafts - Painting with oil paints
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"Is it possible to use oil paint straight out of the tube? Do I need to mix it with something or not? I've had confusing answers, so please help!" -- A.N.

In the shortest possible answer: "Yes." It's absolutely fine to use oil paint as it comes out of a tube, without adding anything to it whatsoever. It's not bad technique, it's not amateurish, it won't make a painting crack, it won't make colors dull.

It makes following the fat over lean rule easy because you effectively ignore it.

What it does do is limit your choice of consistency of the paint you're applying to however it comes out the tube. To get a thin layer of paint for glazing colors you can physically spread the paint as thinly as you can manage. If you mix it with some solvent or oil, the consistency is more spreadable and it's easier to achieve an even, thin layer. A little paint mixed solvents do an initial sketch or underpainting will dry at a different rate to pure paint or paint mixed with an oil medium. Likewise, oil paint mixed with an alkyd medium.