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Darrell, I would like to ask you, what could I do when some of my paints are not wet enough, the problem is that I have a huge tube of white paint that is very thick and has trouble coming out? Thank you very much for any help. Beatriz

Hi Beatriz, the problem is one of two things. (1) Your paint is drying out, or (2) there’s insufficient oil in the tube to push out the soft oil paint. Without getting into a lot of detailed explanations, there’s two kinds of oils in a tube of oil paint. There’s the oil mixed into the paints which keeps it nice and soft. Then there’s the oil that is used to line the tube to help ‘push’ out the oil paint when pressure is applied to the tube itself with your fingers. This oil will not mix with the oil paint. I’ll just call it tube oil for right now.

If the oil within your paint is drying out, then after you squeeze some out onto your palette, simply take a mixture of 50% turp and 50% linseed oil and with a palette knife work it into your paints. Use a small amount to begin with and gradually add more until the paint is at the consistency you like.

If your tube oil is dry and you cannot get the paint out of the tube, then you’ve got to cut the tube open and transfer your paint to several small freezer bags. The smaller, the better. Seal them tight making sure you get all of the air out. If you have a vacuum sealer that’s even better. Key is small bags or vacuum pouches. When you need the color, take a small bag and poke a hole into it with a pin, squeeze out what you need and cover the hole up with packing tape.