Richards art career began at the legendary Art Center College of Design with an automotive design scholarship. A resulting change in major found him pursuing packaging and graphics and ultimately a teaching position at the prestigious school.
This launched a successful career in the Advertising/ Design business and culminated in the partnership, Runyan & Rice, which became one of the most successful Corporate Graphics firms in the country. Upon an early retirement, he moved to the Santa Ynez Valley and began his painting journey.
In 1999 his painting interest resulted in the pursuit of fine art on a full time basis, studying with the likes of Ken Auster, John Cosby, John Budicin, and others. His work can be described as contemporary impressionism and his appreciation of the Plein Air experience finds him painting on location as well as in-studio.
In September of 2007, he was awarded the Artist Choice Award and Honorable Mention in the SoCalPAPA Newport Nautical Museum Show. The prior year in October of 2006, he was awarded a juried Third Place in the SOCALPAPA, “Painting the Back Bay” show, and in May of 04 he won the Grand Prize in that same show and a second place in 2003. A first place in the 2004 LPAPA juried member resulted in an invitation to participate in the sixth Annual “Laguna Beach Plein Air Invitational”.