Sarah Sheffield

Skills: Artist, Painter

Sarah Sheffield started her professional life in social services and soon decided against continuing in that field. Having grown up around design (an architect grandfather, an art teacher mother and industrial designer father), she decided to develop an art portfolio and enter the arts field. After years of running her own graphic arts business and teaching art part-time in community facilities, she was hired as a permanent arts instructor in the Raleigh Parks and Recreation system. Her career shifted into arts administration and she eventually became the Cultural Arts Supervisor for the Town of Cary. Following retirement from that position, she began making stained glass and painting. She paints outdoors a good portion of the year. Originally from Detroit, she spent her teen and adult years in the southeast. Detroit influences her subject choices in that she is often pulled toward urban and ordinary subjects. Her international travels have opened her up to old and lush environments. She is attracted to scenes with strong forms and strives to impart a sense of abstraction in her representational work.

She has been fortunate to study with nationally recognized artists: Peggi Kroll Robert, Dawn Whitelaw, David Dunlop, Rick McClure, John Poon, Lori Putnam, and Nicole Kennedy. She has been juried into many shows at arts facilities and galleries. She is a member of Fine Arts League of Cary (FALC), PaintNC (en plein aire/outdoor), and American Impressionism Society, and regularly shows her work at Cary Gallery of Artists and Figments Gallery in Wilmington, NC

I paint to discover— to fully observe, explore, and connect with the world. I am inspired to capture familiar and intimate moments with simplicity and directness. I particularly like finding beauty in ordinary subjects. I am excited when I find “the common” has been elevated to the uncommon by some act of light, atmosphere or perspective. I am attracted to all themes but especially those that convey some sense of mystery or reminiscence. Thus, you will discover vintage architecture and objects, concealed places, shadows and palpable mood as part of my work. Clients may suggest commissioned themes.

I work primarily in oil and watercolor from life—painting outdoors and from still lifes in my studio. My goal is to interpret the spirit of the moment, bring more abstraction into my representational work, and to awaken personal memories in my viewer.