Richard (Rick) Herold was born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1941, served in the Navy, and attended the Acadamie Julian in Paris, St. John's University in Minnesota, Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles, and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). In California, he launched an art magazine while studying architectural arts at Otis and was the official Los Angeles County portrait painter from 1968-1970. Herold worked as a teacher at Pierce College and Los Angeles Junior Colleges before turning the Zephyr Theatre into a studio and center for art happenings, theater, and Esalen group events.
A published author of erotica including The Naked Artist, Rick Herold is best known as a professional artist. His work has been shown at many venues including the Orlando and Molly Barnes galleries in Los Angeles, the Zara Gallery in San Francisco, and in museum collections in Missouri, Colorado, and Oregon. Rick Herold used a variety of media and techniques including painting, reverse painting on plastic, neon, sculpture and tattooing. His artworks commonly dealt with the relationship of the erotic and the spiritual, drawing upon his interests in theology, fine art, Asian mandalas, and East Indian Tantric tankas. Herold was also interested in tribal and folk art which he incorporated into his tattoo designs and paintings. His work in tattoo art was documented in Tattoo, a film collaboration with Michael McCullough.
On his website (http://rickherold.com/, accessed in 2013), Herold discusses notable events in his artistic career, including a commission by Bob Hope to create Stations of the Cross in Cleveland, and his thirty-year retrospective exhibition at the ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives in 2003.