Richard's art making combines contemporary aesthetics with the rich history of printmaking to create images that feel both current and timeless. He has worked for most United States periodicals and newspapers ranging from Smithsonian Magazine to the New York Times and international organizations such as the International Monetary Fund and the United Nations publication divisions. Downs is a graduate of Art Center College of Design and was a faculty member for 6 years and he currently teaches in the Applied Art & Design department at Sierra College. Richard has received numerous awards for his work including the Society of Illustrators Museum in New York and American Illustration.
In January 2014 Richard closed his first Bay Area solo exhibit of his work at the Transmission Gallery in Oakland. His work has been profiled in the June/July 2013 Issue of Sactown Magazine, the Winter 2013 issue of Studio Visit and the January 2014 issue of US Airways Magazine and AdornoMag.com. Richard lives in Nevada City with his wife and artist Gwyn Stramler and their daughter Jillian.