Stanley Wingate Woodward was born on December 11, 1890, in Malden, Massachusetts, son of Alice E. (Colesworthy) and Frank E. Woodward. He was one of eight children and a twin of Sidney, who later became an art dealer and critic.
In 1909, Woodward graduated from Malden High School and the family moved to Wellesley Hills. He studied at the Eric Pape School of Art, the School of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. He left school to serve in France as a Corporal in the Field Artillery 28th Division during World War I. After the war, he settled in Ogunquit, Maine, and became a free lance illustrator for Collier's and the Christian Science Monitor, where his brother Sidney was art editor.
In 1925, he held his first solo show of marine oils at Casson Galleries, Boston, where his twin brother Sidney was manager. He was encouraged to continue painting the ocean after the entire exhibition sold out.
Woodward married Ruth Brainerd in 1926 and they settled in Newton, Massachusetts, where they were neighbors to a young Bette Davis, who had recently graduated from high school. Woodward maintained contact with the actress for the rest of his life, and through Ms. Davis, he befriended other show business personalities.
During the 1930s, Woodward taught painting at the Woodward Outdoor Painting School of Rockport, Massachusetts, at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, at the Ringling School of Art in Sarasota, Florida, and at the Laguna Beach School in California. In 1937, he established his residence and studio in Rockport, Massachusetts.
Woodward served as an Air Corps captain and director of camouflage training at McChord Field in Tacoma, Washington, during World War II. In 1947, he published a book on painting techniques entitled Adventure in Marine Painting. He was also the author of Marine Paintings in Oil and Water Color.
Woodward was a member of the Chicago Society of Etchers, the Concord Art Association, the Print Makers Society of California, the Boston Society of Water Color Painters, Allied Artists of America, the Guild of Boston Artists, the North Shore Art Association, the American Water Color Society, the Grand Central Galleries Association, and the Rockport Art Association. His work is in the collections of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Bowdoin College, Amherst College, Lehigh University, and the Prudential Life Insurance Collection.
Stanley Wingate Woodward died on March 21, 1970 in Gloucester, Massachusetts.