Ser Guapos

Paul Richmond
    En Castellano
  Paul RichmondAfter graduating from Columbus College of Art and Design in 2002 and coming out of the closet shortly thereafter, PaulRichmond’s fine artwork become a vehicle for exploring and understanding his own journey and developing a dialogue with other members of the LGBT community. His paintings have been featured in numerous group and solo exhibitions, art anthologies, and on the covers of over 200 novels.

Paul is represented by Lyman-Eyer Gallery in Provincetown, Massachusetts and he is the Associate Art Director for Dreamspinner Press. He is also co-founder of the anti-bullying organization You Will Rise Project. He lives with his husband Dennis Niekro and their two whippets in Columbus, Ohio.

Artist statement.




My work is an exploration of sexuality and identity through narrative painting. I draw inspiration from my own experiences as a young gay man from a conservative environment to break down the social constructs that exist around sexual orientation and gender roles. Through colorful, illustrative, and sometimes humorous paintings, I expose the grey areas that become overshadowed by black and white moral codes. By employing the visual communication techniques of graphic design and illustration, my work is bold yet inviting with apparent, underlying themes. It invites viewers of all origins to make personal connections with the imagery that I’ve employed to tell my story and encourages them to question conventional ideas that disregard the value of their individuality.

Paul Richmond

Working in both oils and acrylics, Paul often superimposes complex layers of imagery while playing with translucency, creating an imaginative multi-layered experience for his audience. His unexpected juxtapositions are at times whimsical and at other times, introspective. The human figure features prominently in his work, providing an instant human connection that draws us into the stories he tells through paint.

Paul, who hails from Columbus, Ohio, was kind enough to provide Art is Fun with this fascinating interview that opens a window into his art and his working process.

How long have you been an artist? (Similarly, when did you know you wanted to be an artist?)

At the age of three, my favorite pastime was sitting at the dining room table with a stack of scrap paper and crayons, illustrating my imagined adventures as a fairy tale princess. Since becoming an actual princess wasn’t a viable career option, my parents chose to support my artistic interests by finding a local artist to take me under her wing. The day I stepped into Linda Regula’s studio for the first time, I knew exactly what I wanted to be when I grew up. And thanks to her thoughtful mentorship and the generous encouragement of my family, teachers, and friends along the way, that’s exactly what happened.

Where do you get your ideas & inspiration for your paintings?
Many of my paintings are inspired by my own personal experiences. After coming out of the closet, I used my art to explore that journey of self-discovery in a very personal series called “Ins and Outs.”

Other inspirations include contemporary illustration and graphic design, classic pin-up art, fashion photography, vintage sideshow banners, and anything else pretty, weird, or sparkly that happens to cross my path. Usually the best ideas come when I’m not seeking them out at all.

Paul RichmondAucoin made appearances on Good Morning America and Oprah.

He appeared as himself in an episode of Sex and the City called "The Real Me" (Season 4, Episode 2), doing Carrie Bradshaw's makeup for a fashion show during New York's Fashion Week.

The Tori Amos song "Taxi Ride" from her 2002 album Scarlet's Walk is a partial homage to Aucoin.

What do you enjoy the most about making art?

The thing I enjoy most about the artistic process is its unpredictability. In most fields, if someone had been practicing for twenty six years, they would probably feel that they had achieved some level of mastery. That’s not to say I haven’t sharpened my skills over the years, but every time I step in front of my easel, I feel like it’s the first time all over again. There’s still so much to learn and it’s exciting. I can remember heading into Linda’s studio each week as a child and being filled with a sense of awe at the infinite possibilities. Walking into my studio today gives me the same feeling, and I can’t imagine ever getting bored with this career.