A NURSE of 30 years has given up the profession to follow her true path as an artist.
Sharon Teresa Ross took the plunge and changed her well-established career as a nurse with a list of qualifications, to follow her first love, art.
The 46-year-old decided to take the jump while studying a fine art degree at Wirral Metropolitan College.
Initially Sharon did the course part-time, but then went full-time when she realised it was what she wanted to do. She graduated last July.
Since then Sharon has emerged as a professional artist and has obtained gallery space at a New York‘s, Agora Gallery.
Sharon, who lives in Wallasey, is also organising an exhibition at a Wirral gallery in the summer with fellow classmates.
She told the News: “My mother, Monica, died of a heart attack at 34. I was only 13 so it had a profound impact on me. Not only as a girl growing into womanhood but led me to my career as a nurse.
“I left school at 16 with only one ‘O’ level which was in art. My father told me to get a proper job, so I got more qualifications and became a nurse.
“I spent 30 years developing my career and gained two degrees in nursing, one a masters in clinical nursing. But I became stressed with the job as I progressed up the ladder.
“I started painting again in 2006. I got really hooked on art and became very passionate about it all, it felt so right.
“After I graduated with a third degree in art I realised I needed to take a new path.
“I believe that things happen for a reason. When I was a younger I could do either art or nursing. With the death of my mother I chose the lattern. However, now I have completed that path and the time is right to commence the journey as an artist.”
Her work in New York will be displayed from November 27 to December 18 as part of a collective exhibition with other artists.
Sharon added: “I predominantly do figurative paintings which are literal and abstract, and I began exploring landscapes on the course. They display how true feelings can be hidden behind a mask. That is where the venetian masks come in to some of my work where it hides your true identity.
“Making a huge lifestyle adjustment has been the best thing I have ever done.
“As one book closes I am now starting a new book and chapter in life as an artist.”
To see Sharon’s work visit www.sharonross.co.uk