Riggs was born in Portsmouth, and is self-taught in his art, both in his traditional painting and in his digital work. He also attended art school, but he was expelled after complaining about the course. Riggs' most famous achievement is his work with Iron Maiden and his creation of Eddie, the band's mascot and subject of their album and single covers. Riggs' first picture of Eddie was originally entitled "Electric Matthew Says Hello," and was actually painted for a possible punk cover. Iron Maiden's management came across it while looking through Riggs' portfolio, and asked him to add hair to the figure to make it look less punk-like. The resulting picture was used for the debut album, Iron Maiden, released in 1980 and Riggs went on to work with Iron Maiden throughout the 1980s and into the 90s, creating many of the band's famous album covers. In 1992, however, the band decided to accept contributions from other artists for their next album, Fear of the Dark, resulting in much less input from Riggs in recent years.