Given the wide range of paints and pigmented materials available, architects and designers must learn to navigate around and between the multiple colour systems and terminologies that have been generated to describe colour. Each paint manufacturer, for example, has a dierent method of indexing and cataloguing colour, despite numerous attempts to standardize. Manufacturers can copyright a colour by name, but not the colour itself, and so many continue the practice of having not only a name, but also an internal or technical code. e nature of most construction contracts, where an element of choice lies with the contractor in the selection of a supplier, means that the architect or designer may not be able to dene colours precisely until a very late stage. Commonly, choices are made in relation to building sequence or component delivery times, meaning that the selection of structural systems and construction elements inevitably comes before the consideration of surfaces nishes. is frustrating, practical problem contributes to the lack of commitment to colour at the early stages of most projects. Orientating oneself within the colour maze is far from simple, and it is useful to be aware of some background to the most common classication systems and the general language of colour.