Born in Kansas and raised in Oklahoma, Sherrie McGraw was first exposed to impressionist landscape painting while still living at home. At the age of 23, McGraw moved to New York to study at the Art Students League. It was there that she studied under the noted painter David Leffel.
Working as a night guard at the Metropolitan Museum of Art afforded McGraw the opportunity to study the paintings and drawings of the world's most famous artists. In 1980 McGraw left the museum and began to paint full time; eventually began teaching classes at the League as well.
McGraw has received awards from the Samagundo Art Club, American Artists Professional League, Hudson Valley Art Association, and the National Arts Club. She has been featured in Southwest Art, American Artsists, Art of the West, and Art Talk. She has also written a book, "The Language of Drawing: From an Artist's Viewpoint."
In 1992, McGraw moved to New Mexico, where she continues to live and work today.