Artist Sharon Simons-Passmore

An example of fine art by Sharon Simons-Passmore

Photo of Sharon Simons-Passmore


SHARON SIMONS-PASSMORE, originally from Chicago and currently residing in East Tennessee, studied art at the University of Arizona in Tucson.  Sharon was one of the first women allowed to work on the backstretch and spent her summers during those years exercising thoroughbred race horses at Arlington Park Race Track in Illinois.  Following the breakdown of a young horse she had become fond of, Sharon was inspired to do her first pastel portrait.  Encouraged by her commercial art teacher in Arizona and various members of the press in Chicago, Sharon began a side-career of drawing equine portraits in pastel.
Among her clientele over the years:  J. Willard Marriott, Sr., founder of the Marriott Corporation; B.J. Ridder, Chairman of the Board of Knight-Ridder Publications; and Louis Rowan, past president of the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association.  Commissioned portraits include such well-known horses as Secretariat, Ruhlman, Flying Paster, The Bart, Crystal Water, Dalia, Modus Vivendi, Messenger of Song, Cascapedia, Fast Hilarious, and quarter horse world champion roping horse, Two-Eyed Tyree.
Sharon and her husband relocated to Tennessee in 1992 where they reside on a 25-acre farm.  She returned to doing pastel portraits in 1999 but sensed a lack of challenge.  In 2003, she became involved in an online group of equine artists.  The information shared by this group and a number of new friendships encouraged Sharon to "push the envelope."  Since 2010, the highlight of each year is a trip to Saratoga Race Track in July where Sharon joins four other artists for a long weekend of laughs, trips to galleries, and time at the track getting reference photos.  Sharon is currently working in oils and expanding subject matter to people portraits and farm animals.

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