Soul Flows

Settle for a Draw.
September 14, 2009, 3:57 pm
Filed under: Art, Interviews | Tags: , , ,

SoulFlows first art feature, someone whose work I admire, illustrator, Richie Pope. His work is phenomonal, with features on numerous sites and magazines. Richie’s work draw from pop culture, music, politics, and more. His work is more than something to look at, it’s both conceptual and conversational. Capturing the essence of his subjects, and the emotions of the characters he presents, SoulFlows takes you into the mind and sketchbook of Richie Pope.

Be Happy Mr. West“Be Happy, Mr. West”

2009 NY Society of Illustrators Student Scholarship Competition


“KING”Missing Things by Richie Pope“The Missing Things”

CMYK Magazine, Vol. 44

Thomas Lynch by Richie Pope“Thomas Lynch”

for UTNE Reader

If you had to describe yourself with one song lyric/verse, what would it be?

This isn’t a song lyric, but it’s a beautiful quote from one of my favorite films, American Beauty:    “…it’s hard to stay mad, when there’s so much beauty in the world. Sometimes I feel like I’m seeing it all at once and it’s too much. My heart fills up like a balloon that’s about to burst…and then I remember to relax…and stop trying to hold on to it, and then it flows through me like rain…and I can’t feel anything but gratitude for every single moment of my stupid little life.”

Who is Richie Pope?

Richie Pope is a freelance illustrator/creative thinker based in Richmond, VA.

Your medium is…

Pen, digital, pencil, acrylic all mixed in with some collage elements.

You would describe your style as…

Realism, street art and expressionism filtered through the mind of a surrealist.

What themes are you pursuing in your work?

I’ve always focused a lot on conceptual themes, but recently I’ve been trying to take this conceptual process into a more surreal realm visually.

What artists influenced you, and how?

A few artists out of German Expressionism influenced me, like Gustav Klimt and Ego Schiele. Klimt had a really amazing way of using shapes to define the figure, especially the female figure. He also made me a lover of patterns. Schiele’s drawings were more rough and “crude” but the distortion of his human figures brings out the inherent flaws and imperfections of people. It makes them more human to me. Sterling Hundley, one of my former professors and mentors is also an influence, in terms of thinking conceptually, capturing value and creating an interesting composition in a piece. Tin Salamunic, another one of my former professors and really good friends really made me appreciate drawing in a sketchbook and working really hard to get where you want to go.

What inspires you?

My own life experiences inspire me the most, although other people’s experiences are also very interesting. Comic books, cartoons and movies inspire the way I tell stories, the way I see ideas and narratives in my head, and just the way I see day-to-day things. My mother’s strength and kindness also inspires me.

What’s on your playlist?

Blueprint 3, Kid Cudi and the new album “Humbug” from Arctic Monkeys.

What do you want viewers to walk away with with your art?

The piece I did about Michael Jackson, entitled “King,” made this girl almost cry. That sums it up right there. When my work has hit somebody in some way emotionally, it makes everything I do worth it.

What do you have on the come up?

I’m working on a mixtape cover for this rapper named Nique called “Framed and Unfocused.” It’s a more surreal conceptual cover, which I don’t really see done too often with mixtapes, so it should be something new and interesting for people to be exposed to. I’m also going to be putting together a lot of my sketches for a book called “Scribbles and Bits Vol. 1,” which should be out by the end of the year. Other than that, I’m just drawing, drawing, promoting and promoting.

So to wrap it up, tell everybody how they can get in contact w/you and where they can see more of your work.

You can go to my website at or my illustration blog at to see my more personal in-depth process. You can also email directly at

Anything else you want to say before we close out?

Do whatever makes you truly happy in life. Don’t let anyone tell you that your dreams don’t have their own worth. Always be willing to learn, no matter how much you feel you already have learned. No matter how many times doors may shut in your face, never give up on your passion.



1 Comment so far
Leave a comment

gee, whiz richie!!! awesome work 🙂

Comment by dsis58

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