Born in London, Reuben Mednikoff studied, between 1920 and 1923, at St Martin's School of Art and, between 1923 and 1935, he worked mostly in advertising. In 1933-34, he held an exhibition at the Keane Galleries in London and, in 1935, he met Grace Pailthorpe, with whom he produced several works. In 1942-43, he started calling himself Richard or Ricki and in 1948, when he was "adopted" by Grace, he changed his name to Richard Pailthorpe. In 1949, he published the poem "The Bee is Strong" in The Occult Observer. In 1955, he opened the Little Georgian Antique Shop in Sussex, a town where he died some years later.