Richard graduated from Hall High School in 1944 and briefly attended the Yale School of Art before enlisting in the Army. After serving in World War II in Europe, he studied at the Parsons School of Design in New York, graduating in 1949. He began his career first as a commercial artist and later as a fine artist. He chronicled the cityscape of Hartford in intricate line drawings that became his signature style. He also loved New York City and drew its skyline. A major project was drawing stages of construction of the twin towers at the World Trade Center. After the tragedy of September 11, 2001, Richard donated a number of these drawings to the New-York Historical Society. Recently, one was included in the exhibition "Drawn by New York, Six Centuries of Watercolors and Drawings at the New-York Historical Society." Richard published numerous collections of his drawings and wrote and illustrated two books on drawing techniques. He was a unique individual and lived his life fully and happily. He had many dear friends and loved Christmas and the spirit it engendered. He celebrated the holiday throughout the year and, with his long hair and white beard, could be mistaken for St. Nick. He loved puns and word play, science fiction and especially the steam locomotive era. On his 80th birthday in recognition of his life and accomplishments, Governor Jodi Rell proclaimed August 21, 2006 as Richard Welling Day.