Sheila Hicks (nee Warren) was born at Bosliven, St Buryan, in West Cornwall, and was educated at the West Cornwall School for Girls, and later at the Penzance School of Art. The family businesses aside from farming included connections with the local bakery chain, Warren's, which remains in operation.
She was quick to disavow that she had any right to the name 'Cavell' which she had adopted in her teen years because of her admiration for Edith CAVELL, the nurse heroine of WWI. Cavell herself was a watercolour artist of some skill, and had painted coastal scenery in North Cornwall on holidays, before going abroad to Belgium in the course of her nursing career.
Her favourite media, at which she excelled was watercolour, but she also designed programmes and demonstrated a lively sense of atmospheric colour. She was a long-time member of the Newlyn Society of Artists, and an immensely supportive friend to many. Amongst her wide circle of friends were the sculptor Barbara TRIBE, the painter John MILLER and numerous others.
She married farmer Roy Hicks in the early part of WWII and for many years they lived and worked at Tregiffian Farm, on the cliffs above Sennen near Land's End. Latterly, as a widow she moved into a flat at the historic Queen's Hotel, of which she was part owner with her daughter and son-in-law, and fortunate were her friends to be invited to have tea with her there overlooking Mount's Bay. One of her obituary articles was headed 'Artist was proud of Cornish identity; An artist who also had a special talent for radiating sunshine whatever the occasion has died aged 91.' This was without doubt the real Sheila, whose sunny disposition was her hallmark - and her artistic talents a bonus.
Sheila was a Bard of the Cornish Gorsedd, Lywores Kernow by name (Painter of Cornwall).