LAST year’s Rochester Mural Festival runner-up, Ellsworth Overton, is returning for his fourth time.
The Canadian-born artist, who lives in Melbourne, said he could not turn down the opportunity to return to a place that has become a home away from home.
‘‘I love the fun of being in a community that joins in and has a bit of fun painting and enjoying art in the street,’’ he said.
‘‘The town is just so friendly, and so is the group that runs it.
‘‘I love the people of Rochester and I am staying at the Shamrock again, which I love very much. It’s a real asset to the town.
‘‘I’m staying in the same room I was in last year, which is great because I get to look out the window and see the cattle and sheep trucks go through and see the sheep dogs running around rounding them up — it’s typical Australia in a nutshell.’’
Ellsworth is, for the most part, a self-taught artist. He has an extensive background in painting murals, including in Canada, Mexico and the western coast of the United States.
‘‘I enjoy the freedom of painting in a big space and that is open to the public,’’ he said. ‘‘They can watch you do it. Every day (at previous events) I had people come by, and they see your progress.’’