After six months of planning and another six months of painting, the colorful, community-centric wall murals at Children’s Therapy have been completed and were dedicated in early September. Local scenes of the Seattle skyline, Pike Place Market, Renton High School, the Ballard locks, King Street Station, a ferry and whale propelling through the water and more were the result of a collaborative planning process between volunteer artist Chip Coates (pictured far right) and the Children’s Therapy staff and leaders. “Even though I was volunteering my time to do this, I wanted to make sure staff had buy-in because they’re here every day,” says Chip, a Tukwila fifth grade teacher.
Designed to be stimulating and interactive, but not too overwhelming for patients with sensory challenges, the walls not only brighten this waiting area, but create opportunities for children and parents to connect, talk, find and recognize local landmarks and Northwest highlights— visions of our community important to our families.
Chip’s illustration style for this project was inspired by children’s authors and illustrators, Richard Scarry, Dr. Seuss, and Calvin & Hobbs cartoonist, Bill Waterson. He has also designed sets for the Renton Civic Center and his own side gig, Sunny Day Design.
In addition to a huge thanks to Chip, thanks as well to Valley employees Mark Kaneshiro who ordered and got all the paint in the right colors (including “Limealicious!) and Rick Williams who coordinated opening early for Chip to paint and mounted signage for the mural.