Gainor Roberts was a senior in high school with big dreams of becoming an artist.
But her father saw things differently. He sent his daughter off to a liberal arts college where she worked at her studies but never gave up on her dreams of becoming a painter.
Flash ahead nearly 50 years and Roberts is a well-known as well as the curator at the Carrollwood Cultural Center. Her own work, which adorns her home, is also displayed across the country. She specializes in a little bit of everything, but her latest craze is the working with egg tempera. Egg tempera painting combines the use of egg yolk, water and pigments that can’t be found in stores.
Roberts makes her own paint and has even put out a publication called, “A Modern Approach to Egg Tempera,’’ where she describes the process. It is complicated, but it also dates back to the ancient Egyptians, including separating the yolk from the egg, combining it with pigments that can only be bought online, and adding in just enough water.
But she won’t complain about the end result – including a series of paintings that Roberts is still working on called “The Genesis Series.’’ The paintings cover mood themes, including, anger, jealousy, love, inspiration, guilt, laughter, and several more. The paintings are powerful and the inspiration goes back a long way.
“I started painting when I was a toddler,’’ Roberts said. “By the time I turned 18, I wanted to go to art school and started working with an artist who knew all about the work I wanted to do and I became a sponge. I listened to everything and, after four years of college, I was determined to make it as an artist.’’
Roberts moved to New York and realized that she had found her true passion.
As the years moved along, Roberts never let go of her love of art, and added learning about computer technology. She said that today she is a computer geek and teaches computers at the Carrollwood Cultural Center as well as several art classes. She paints as often as possible and is about to start working on a series of miniatures, paintings that are 24 square inches or less.
She’s keeping busy and has no plans to stop. She and her late husband once spent eight years on a 31-foot boat traveling around the hemisphere, so her energy isn’t about to sag. She works hard outside her studio to negotiate with artists from all over to display their works at the Carrollwood Cultural Center and puts on new shows on an almost monthly basis.
“I love doing this,’’ Roberts said. “It’s a passion and even when I was in that four-year college, I always knew that I was an artist. I might slow down, but I’ll never stop.’’