Traditionally, only five colors were used for patachitra art i.e. white, black, blue, black, red, and yellow. Nowadays, many other colors like green, brown are also used.
White is obtained when conch shell is powdered and boiled with kaitha gum, till a paste is formed. For use, little of this paste is mixed with water.
Black is formed from lamp black or lamp soot. A burning lamp is placed inside an empty tin, till a considerable amount of soots collects on the underside of the tin. The soot is then mixed with gum and water for use.
The oil used in the lamp is from polang tree seeds which are locally available.
Green is made by boiling green leaves like neem (Asian Tree) leaves with water and kaitha gum.
Brown is obtained from Geru stone, whose powder is mixed with gum and water.
Red comes from a stone Hingulal, which, is a locally available stone. The stone is powdered and mixed with water and gum.
Blue obtained from a blue stone called Khandneela found in Orissa. The stone is powdered and boiled in the mixture of water and gum.
Yellow is derived from yellow stone called Hartal, which is found in Jaipur. The stone is powdered and mixed with water and gum for painting.
All these colours are mixed in dried coconut shells. The colours are mixed with kaitha gum which acts as a fixative and prevents the painting from decaying. A variety of colours is made by mixing the existing primary colours, like, red mixed with white gives pink.
In case the colours dry in the coconut shell then water is mixed in the colour and it is reused.