A group of Southern Wheatbelt residents met with travelling artist Susie Capewell on Saturday at the Community Resource Centre in Wagin to turn photos of their pets into pastel portraits. “We had a good day,” Capewell said. “I love teaching what I love.” Originally from Gayndah in Queensland, Capewell has been trekking around Australia with her partner and running art workshops as they travel. Capewell has also run three “paint and sip” sessions in Katanning and organised similar workshops in Williams. The Wagin session began with an introduction to enlarging photographs using a proportional divider, followed by instructions on how to create a rough sketch and how to approach pastels. Fe Thompson, Tania Smith, Melissa Jeffes and Ron Meir came prepared with photographs of pets of all sorts — a chicken, a dog, a weero and a cat. “A lot of artists don’t like to let all of their secrets out, but I want to tell people how to get into it,” Capewell said. “There are a lot of people making a living from art now — I’m not one of them, all artists are poor until they die — but it is helping us travel around.” Capewell and her partner are now headed to Salmon Gums before they fly back to Brisbane for a few weeks in April. She said she hoped to travel through the Southern Wheatbelt and Great Southern region again when they return. By the end of the Wagin pastel session each artist had produced a lifelike and lovable portrait of their feathered or furry friend.