Kajali is an ancient form of painting originating from Rajasthan. This art is more prominent in the eastern part of the state. The word ‘kajali’ is derived from ‘kajal’ meaning carbon black. Apart from the grey shade imparted by carbon black, other colors have also been incorporated into this painting.
No brushes are used in Kajali painting. The only tools used are hand and cloth. Carbon black obtained from burning oil lamps is spread on a paper or cloth using a piece of paper. The rough image so formed is given a finishing touch by adjusting the shades by hand or a cloth. Powder of semi-precious stones is used instead of carbon black for producing a colorful image. The paper used in this painting has a cream base with a slightly rough surface for absorbing the powdered material. Canvas cloth is also a preferred medium.
The paintings usually portray gods, wild animals and women, with special stress given on the facial expressions.