Watershape University

DESIGN 2611: Essential Color Theory, Materials & Textures Workshop

Whether on purpose or not, the use of color has a tremendous impact on design, and ultimately, the user experience. In this essential course, students explore the powerful impact of color theory and how to wield it to distinguish their design work, and inspire emotional reactions from their clients.

Learning Outcomes

  • List the properties of light, vision and optical physics. Define color theory, primary colors, color “DNA”, blends and color mixing.
  • Discuss the use of color wheels. Explore the concept of color psychology and how impacts mood and ultimately purchasing decisions.
  • Consider how color can make or break design concepts.
  • Introduce color psychology, how color can influence purchasing decisions.


  • Duration: 16 hours
  • IACET CEUs: 1.6
  • All students who complete the course and evaluation form receive a Certificate of Completion documenting 1.6 IACET CEUs even if they do not continue with the Certified Watershape Designer (CWD) certification.


There is one option:


  • 8-hours online on-demand plus 8-hours live in-person
  • See schedule for upcoming live in-person classes

Online On-Demand Units:

  • Start online units immediately at your convenience
  • Available 24/7/365
  • Start and stop at your own pace
  • Repeat content as needed
  • The course is organized into roughly one-hour logical units of study. You can tackle one at a time or even stop after 20 minutes and start over later or simply resume where you left off.
  • The manual is available as a PDF download
  • Instructors are available for calls during normal business hours
  • No travel or lodging expenses!

Live In-Person Units:

  • A typical course runs 8-hours in a single day
  • Complete attendance is required
  • Ask questions as they come up
  • Manual is provided in class
  • Instructors are available for questions during the lectures
  • Travel, lodging and meals are the responsibility of the student
  • Watershape University provides lunch


Check back soon — our schedule may update at any time.

Live In-Person

  • Typically $1400 although other fees may apply
  • Not currently scheduled
  • If you are interested, please email info@watershape.org.


Watershape University’s DESIGN 2611: Essential Color Theory, Materials & Textures Workshop unveils the science of color and light and explains how colors can modify how we feel about a space. Intelligent control and selection of color is a key tool for any designer’s toolbox.

DESIGN 2611: Essential Color Theory, Materials & Textures Workshop supports the following certifications:

International Watershape Institute (IWI)
International Watershape Institute (IWI)
Certified Watershape Professional (CWP)
Certified Watershape Professional (CWP)
Certified Watershape Designer (CWD)
Certified Watershape Designer (CWD)

Licensing and CEUs

The Certified Watershape Designer (CWD) certification may be used for contractor licensing and required continuing education in certain jurisdictions. The CWD certification builds upon the CWF certification; therefore, all Certified Watershape Designers (CWDs) are also CWFs which support licensing in the following jurisdictions:


DESIGN 2611: Essential Color Theory, Materials & Textures Workshop is intended for and attended by designers, builders, installers, consultants, contractors, and subcontractors — particularly those looking to control color for better design.

Level: 2 – Sophomore / Novice / Limited Experience

There are no prerequisites for DESIGN 2611: Essential Color Theory, Materials & Textures Workshop

Manual Table of Contents

  • Introduction & Color Science
  • Color Systems
  • Color Mixing
  • Color Mixing Project
  • Color Theory
  • Color Theory Project
  • Color Psychology & Therapy
  • Color Psychology & Therapy Quiz
  • Materials Options & Suitability
  • Tectonics & Joinery
  • Color & Material Harmony
  • Color & Material Harmony Project
  • Material Details
  • Design & Selection Process
  • Design * Selection Project
  • Project Review & Critiques
DESIGN 2611: Essential Color Theory, Materials & Textures Workshop

Authorized Faculty

Anna Shay, ASID

Anna Shay, ASID

As principal of Solanna Design & Development, LLC, Anna Shay is known for incorporating her love for the art of fine craftsmanship into her luxury residential projects. Utilizing exotic materials and cutting-edge technology, Anna creates distinctive designs for an impressive roster of high-end clientele. An eleven-time Platinum winner of the American Society of Interior Designers Awards, Anna’s goal with every project is to create a captivating home that compliments the unique aesthetic and discriminating tastes of each individual client while addressing their lifestyle needs and desires. Having traveled extensively throughout the world, Anna’s style is informed by her insights into old traditions, as well as her connection to fresh, contemporary design. These cultivated instincts have won Solanna Design numerous accolades in both local and national publications such as the Robb Report, Traditional Home, Wall Street Journal, OC Home, The Orange County Register and most recently Tahoe Quarterly Magazine and Mountain Living Digital.

Just getting started?

Most students begin with our 3-day pool construction course.

Online On-Demand

Watershape University’s Certified Watershape Foreman (CWF) certification is recognized by the following jurisdictions for continuing education and licensing purposes:

Core Class Refresh

Would you like free access to our core online classes, including our 3-day Essential Pool Construction, 2-day Essential Fluid Engineering Workshop (with the latest worksheets!), Color Theory, Principles of Design, and others?

Watershape University provides free access to individuals that have already completed equivalent courses with other institutions. We recognize that our students often want to refresh their knowledge in specific subjects but it doesn’t make sense to repeat a paid class when there are so many other new opportunities to expand knowledge through advanced classes, our webinars, our magazine, etc.

Our Core Class Refresh program is available to authorized employees of Certified Watershape Companies (CWC). To get authorized, simply upload your complete transcript(s) from other institutions so that we can verify which courses you are eligible for. You may upload transcripts through the Portal. Please contact Charlie with any questions.