My Story


I'm Neil, a.k.a. Nelly =)

This is me, and my lovely family on the Dawlish sea wall with Boat Cove in the background. 

Me, Nelly, with my lovely family

I trained as a graphic designer at Exeter College of Art & Design. I then worked as a designer, web developer, and marketer in the technology industry for many years. I continue to work as a contract and freelance technology writer and non-profit marketer.

Deciding to setup Boat Cove

I've always continued to write, design, paint, and illustrate since leaving art college and have always wanted to find a way to make a living from it. 

Following being made redundant in 2021, I decided to create Boat Cove. Over the years I have written articles about the environment, technology, business, art and epilepsy. I love to write and create art and so I created the Boat Cove blog as a way to publish my own articles and use my illustrations to generate income.

Passionate about environmental and ocean protection

I try to reduce my plastic consumption and recycle as much as I can. In fact, I'm a bit of a hoarder! I keep all sorts of junk, which might come in handy at some point, and it usually does. 

I recently started to choose to buy cotton clothing because it can be recycled and is also biodegradable. My sons and their mates surf the beaches of Devon and Cornwall all year, and they refer to Dawlish Warren as 'Wazza'. So I decided to create a 100% cotton 'Wazza' T-shirt for the family. I designed this colourful 'Wazza' logo which incorporates an icon based on the Dawlish Warren sea wall and lifeguard hut with Exmouth in the background.

 Wazza Logo Design - Text Wazza Dawlish Ocean LoveWazza logo T-shirt in black

Dawlish Warren lifeguard hut and surfer at sunset
Photo by Nelly P., Surfing at sunset, Dawlish Warren.


I wanted to create ocean-inspired artwork for people like us that love the ocean. This site is called Boat Cove because our family are at Boat Cove, Dawlish all the time.

My illustrations are all based on sea life, maritime history, and locations that are local to south Devon. I write about the illustration subjects, for example, you can learn about the Atlantic Mackerel which is in this artwork below.

Atlantic Mackerel illustration

You can support me in continuing this venture by buying my gear from the shop (under the Oceanware) menu. Here you'll find premium quality, eco-friendly, ethically made, organic, vegan, cruelty-free clothing featuring my artwork. 

Learn on your adventures

I want you to learn about the oceans and how important they are to us all. Then when you're on your next seaside adventure you may be able to identify some of the creatures and places you might see.

I hope you love my articles and artwork. If you choose to support me in this venture I hope you like the designs and quality of the clothes in the shop. My aim is for you to feel that this blog is:

  • unique, 
  • human,
  • down-to-earth,
  • educational,
  • inclusive,
  • innovative,
  • professional,
  • and quality.

I'd love you to share your views and photos of your adventures in your Boat Cove gear. Thank you for reading and supporting my Boat Cove site, I really do appreciate it.

See you on the water! 

Nelly P profile image
Nelly P.

Paddleboarding in the sun on a sparkling sea at Boat Cove, Dawlish

Photo by Nelly P., Paddleboarding at Boat Cove.