Raised in an unconventional family steeped in generations of animal-adoring entrepreneurs and artists, Sherry’s love of animals and pursuit of creative endeavors is enduring. To Sherry, creatures of all stripes—from lizards to horses—are cherished members of the family. As a child, when she wasn’t playing with her pets or seeking out the local wildlife, she was in her grandfather’s commercial illustration and photography studio as he taught her how to hold a pencil, use a camera, and process film to artistically capture the animals she loves.
Growing up, Sherry was an avid equestrian and for over a decade, she trained dressage horses professionally. Her career in photography, design, and publishing began in 2005 after respiratory disease forced her early retirement from professional equestrian sports. Down but not defeated, she shifted gears.
With her grandmother’s support, she attended graduate school to study anthrozoology, behavioral science, and animal welfare in the food and fashion industries, research, zoos, and sport. This eye-opening scholarly work reinforced for her the importance of scientific and academic publications in the development of guidelines, policies, and laws that govern the human behavior that impacts our world. Over the next 15 years, Sherry developed her editorial, production, and publishing industry acumen as her new business, Catsworth Publishing Services, LLC evolved, working with clients from a variety of professions, professional levels, and academic and public-interest specialties. Since then, her work has graced the pages of international books and journals, and the walls of universities, galleries, and private homes.
As the 2020 pandemic slowed the economy to a crawl, Sherry began a daily art practice of creating animal-related drawings and scratchboard engravings for some art therapy to help pass the expanding time between diminishing client work. She developed an insatiable itch for scratchboard. This unique and historied subtractive illustration technique lends itself to dramatic imagery with vivid contrasts and subtle textures requiring exceptional precision and attention to detail, and it quickly became her medium of choice. After a few weeks of enjoying her creative practice, Sherry showed a few friends her artwork. The scratchboards were a hit and Sherry received her first private pet portrait commissions.
Today, Sherry works alongside her assortment of beloved creatures in a sunlit studio immersed in her wildlife garden, surrounded by the photos, artwork, books, and antique drawing tools she’s inherited or collected over the years. She enjoys revealing the twinkling of an eye, the shimmer of a scale, or the softness of a whisker that reflects the individual expression of each embodied being. She feels lucky and thankful that this new artistic profession allows her to connect her passion for animals, reverence for life, talent for creativity, and appreciation for detail while creating something meaningful that helps her customers celebrate, honor, heal, and memorialize some of their most precious relationships.
Sherry has continued her art education since those early days in her grandfather’s studio. She’s studied drawing, photography, woodcut engraving, printmaking, and sumi-e at Alexandria, VA’s Torpedo Factory, and copper oil painting at Lorton’s Workhouse Arts Center. Most recently, she earned a natural history illustration certificate from the University of Newcastle, EdX. In keeping with family tradition, Sherry’s mother (a talented professional artist) also advises Sherry in her creative work.
In 2019, while wholly embracing her mid-life crisis, Sherry enthusiastically took up a new type of riding—motorcycles! Scratchboard is also well-suited for depicting the varied tonal depths of chrome and gears found in motorcycles, automobiles, and many things mechanical. In light of this, she began including motorcycle portraits in her artwork.
Sherry’s mission is to create art and support publications that inspire, educate, and promote compassion and care toward animals, our planet, and each other. Sherry continues to provide editing, design, and publishing services, and her re-branded company—Catsworth Studios, LLC—now also offers professional portrait commissions and fine art. A lifelong vegetarian athlete and advocate of cruelty-free lifestyles, Sherry donates a portion of all proceeds to support animal welfare, wildlife rescue, and domestic violence shelters.
Catsworth Studios, LLC
PO Box 31353
Alexandria, VA 22310