Rowland Fisher did not fully indulge his love of art until his retirement as a sawmill manager in 1950. He grew up Gorleston, Norfolk, the son and grandson of mariners. The influence of his father instilled in him a deep fascination with the sea, without formal training he drew and painted throughout his life. He made use of a house shared with his sister which had the fortunate addition of a watch tower, from which he enjoyed an uninhibited view of the sea.
Through his lifelong observation of the sea and coastal life Fisher was able to capture the power and magnificence of the sea and the toils of those who worked upon it. He is known for his use of thick oil paint which was frequently applied using a palette knife.
He helped found the Great Yarmouth and District Society of Artists, becoming its president after Arnesby Brown. He was also a member of the Royal Institute of Oil Painters and the Royal Society of Marine Artists, where he won the Watts Prize in 1949. His work hangs in the National Maritime Museum and is held by the Great Yarmouth Maritime Collection.