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When you step outside the Skalny Childcare Center and into their playground, you might feel like you’ve instead stepped onto the page of a Calvin and Hobbs book. And that is exactly what Magnus Champlin wants to happen.

“I’m kind of basing this on a Bill Watterson. I like playing around with other people’s styles that has a bit of nostalgia attached to me.”

Champlin took Watterson’s watercolor and children’s book vibes, as he calls them, and added metallics and accent colors to create a life-size mural along the wall in the playground.

“I love things bigger than me,” Champlin said. “It’s a different experience to be able to stand inside your own work.”

“I like the fact that I can take the things in my head and make them real,” added fellow mural artist Matthew Roberts.

It took two hours to sketch out on the wall and nearly an entire week to paint the mural at the Schottland Family Branch. From start to finish, it took more than 100 manhours to complete.


Champlin and Roberts are part of the organization WALL\THERAPY. It is a community art project that uses murals to inspire and transform landscapes throughout our community.

“We put murals out in the world so everyone can experience art,” Champlin said.

There are more than 100 murals on buildings and walls all created by local and international artists. That’s how the Y learned about WALL\THERAPY, and a new partnership began.

“We fell in love with their sketches,” said Colleen Feder, Administrative Assistance of Association Advancement of the YMCA of Greater Rochester. “They were right on board with our theme and our concept.”

Champlin and Roberts brought the themes and concepts alive. Mike Stevens, Senior VP of Advancement of the YMCA of Greater Rochester, called the mural the cherry on top of the sundae.

“The wall reflects what we’re all about,” said Stevens. “Community, kids of all abilities. And it completes this space.”

The mural features children of all abilities and interests, playing with kites, a VR headset, reading a book. There is also even a nod to Pittsford history with the Copper Beech tree that towered over Copper Beech Park for years.

“The details are what gives it life,” Roberts said. “You can paint something green, but if you put that little edge to it so it’s curved, the details are what makes it pop.”


The mural is much more than something fun to look at. It’s about bringing community and non-profits together and encouraging kids in all of their interests.

“In their rooms, they have art supplies,” Feder said. “Hopefully they’ll see this and base their drawings on something they see out here.”

“If we’re going to develop the whole child, arts and humanities have to be a part of it,” added Stevens.

Champlin and Roberts have both been drawing since they were kids and understand the importance of introducing art at such a young age.

“I want to see kids smiling at it; kids happy, that’s my goal,” said Champlin.

An interpretation of Watterson, through the eyes of two Rochester artists. A one-of-a-kind piece of art for all to enjoy.