GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Latest Cape Ann News

August 6, 2013

From Miss Massachusetts to art

Lone Gull exhibitor, 76, an ex-Miss USA participant

Sandra Ramsey-Sterling, whose work is on display this month at Main Street’s Lone Gull Coffeehouse, dabbled briefly in painting when she was a young woman, but gave it up.

She always liked art, but there were other things to do — like in 1957, when she was crowned Miss Massachusetts USA. She went on to the Miss USA pageant in Long Beach, Calif., where she was one of 15 finalists. A brief modeling career followed, along with her own export business, two husbands, three sons and six grandchildren.

The past decade has been a difficult one, though.

Ramsey-Sterling was widowed in 2002 and later underwent painful back and neck surgeries. She also fought a bout with cancer. Now 76, she has difficulty walking and lives at the Hannah Dustin nursing home in her native Haverhill. But several years ago, Ramsey-Sterling tried painting again — and this time she became obsessed.

Working from memory and from photographs brought to her by friends, Ramsey-Sterling has become an avid artist in the past few years, churning out landscapes, still lives and other scenes in her cramped room at the nursing home.

It’s given her a new lease on life, and plenty of praise from admirers. “It’s a challenge,” she says. “I’m very surprised that people like my paintings so much.”

One of the people who noticed Ramsey-Sterling’s talent is artist Mark Morgan of Atkinson, N.H. And last week, Morgan helped install a show of Ramsey-Sterling’s paintings at the Lone Gull, located at 146 Main St. in Gloucester, where they will be on display through the end of August.

“She’s very prolific in what she does,” says Morgan. “To do what she does in such a small space is amazing.”

“Sometimes,” says Ramsey-Sterling, “I amaze myself.”

Mike Springer can be reached at mspringer@gloucestertimes.com.

 

 

 

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Latest Cape Ann News

Pictures of the Week
Your news, your way
Comments Tracker
AP Video Network
13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp