was born in 1945 in St. Ives, Cornwall, where I have lived for most of my life. After leaving school, I worked as a fisherman until 1985 when I became St. Ives Harbour Master. In 1964 I joined the RNLI as a St. Ives Lifeboatman, was promoted to Coxswain in 1989 and retired after 34 years of service in 2000. I’ve always been interested in art and started painting in 1987 at the St. Ives School of Painting. Since then my work has been shown widely and I have expanded into etching. In 1996 BBC2 series Video Diaries featured my life; “Oils and Oilskins”. The programme was a year in the making and when broadcast was acclaimed by The Times. In 2003 Halsgrove Publishing produced a large-format 144 page book including over 100 of my painting in full colour called Eric Ward’s St. Ives: From His Studio and Beyond.