The rock art of Singida and the L. Eyasi Basin, like that of central Tanzania, is almost exclusively made up of paintings executed predominantly in two pigments, i.e shades of red and white but occasionally brown and black. The result is a plethora of different subject matter reproduced in a variety of styles. Zoomorphic and anthropomorphic figures dominate the sites studied, accounting for 42% and 44% respectively, while geometrics and symbols accounted for only 14% of all recognisable representations. Most animal representations are depicted in naturalistic rendering and human figures are mostly stylised.
Possible materials used to create rock paintings include fat (now also used in industrial paints) from game animals, termites, bullfrogs, and plant oil from nuts and seeds. Others, which have been revealed by ethnographical research, are dung from cow and hyrax mixed with urine, fat or water. Blood seems to have been used as a fixative or may also have been used for ritualistic purposes. Pigments for the red and brown colourings have been revealed to be mainly iron oxide.
We do not know for certain whether comparable materials were used to create the rock paintings in central Tanzania, but we can assume that this was the case. At any rate it has been proven that the red pigment was made from haematite, which occurs naturally in the area. Based on what has been reported from South Africa, the white colourings were probably made up of clay, lime, zinc oxide, gypsum, calcite, talc, ash, plant latex, bird or lizard droppings.
The rock art sites are usually located midway on hill slopes and are sometimes difficult to reach because of the rocky terrain and thick bushes that surround them.
Some can also be found on hill tops (kopjes). In either case, they seem to have been chosen deliberately for their unique location and advantageous view of the surrounding areas. In many cases it was observed that the painted face overlooked some extensive plains or valleys. Most paintings are found on overhang rock shelters likely used for ritualistic practices or as a shelter.
The paintings in better known central Tanzania, espcially those of Kondoa and Singida, and to some extent those of Mbulu, share so many similarities that it is very tempting to think of them as belonging to one tradition and perhaps as the work of one group of hunter-gatherers, a supposition which is not unreasonable given the fact that there are no major natural barriers between the three regions. Indeed, they are part of the same geomorphologic and ecological area with identical biota and climate. Pictographic similarity is seen in terms of subject matter, styles, pigment used and even site types.