The portrayal of the Hindu pantheon of gods and goddesses were drawn from their metaphors in the invocatory verses or ‘dhyanashlokas’. The backdrops of these paintings were greatly embellished with flora, fauna and other aspects of the nature.
Few Themes noted are:
• Anantasayanan, Lekshminarayana, Krishna with Gopis, Nataraja as Dakshinamurthi, Sastha on hunt etc.
• The common themes are of various incarnations Vishnu, Ganesha and manifestations of Siva.
• Characters and scenes from Christian mythology.
• Scene of the battle fought between the armies of Tipu Sultan and the English East India Company.
The peculiarities of Kerala Murals are the process of making the colours with indigenous colours, the order of painting the mural with limited colours and the outlines of “Ra Ra Ra” of the gods and goddesses from the Hindu pantheon are a treat to the eye.
• The peculiarity of Kerala Murals is the elaborate eye which speaks volumes.
• Shading is predominantly packed with dots depending on the shading pattern.
• Merely five colours are used; although now blue is introduced.
• The backdrop is constantly red.
• The background painted in red is coated as per the required shade and is dotted with a mix of red and brown.
• The white area is for all time retained with the background coat itself.
• Throughout the image as well as at the borders a particular design is used called “Ra Ra Ra”. (An illustration of Ra Ra Ra is seen below).