MaineIn 1976 I was awarded an international Greenshields Foundation Grant. There were only four given out worldwide. I came to Maine for the first time that year to be inspired by egg tempera works, my area of study, at the Portland Museum of Art and the Farnsworth Art Museum.
Inspiration I’m inspired by viewing master artists’ work, and by the blessing of living on a private Maine island.
MediumI work with egg tempera, which is a fast-drying medium using egg yolk mixed with pigments. The result is very durable and long lasting. The paint is painstakingly applied, with each work built up of many layers. Egg tempera painting is a traditional Renaissance technique.
Artist Hero. Robert Vickrey and Andrew Wyeth.
Studio My Maine studio is located on a very secluded, oceanfront property and offers me beautiful atmospheric views, and wildlife that has been the subject of many of my paintings. In Kentucky, I work in a circa-1850 restored log cabin with a red barn, which has expansive north-facing windows overlooking an open field where domestic and wild animals roam.
Where in Maine. My wife, Lynn Rita, and I live on Rackliff Island in Spruce Head, and operate a studio at the former Georges River Road School, also known as the Green Schoolhouse. The schoolhouse is located on Route 113 on the St. George Peninsula. It’s been the inspiration for many of my paintings.
Fun Fact. A friend from Tenants Harbor once rushed into my studio to say that Andrew Wyeth was painting just two miles away. I found him sitting on an embankment near some railroad tracks. After a brief exchange, a curious couple came over and asked his name. Andy told them, “I am Gary Akers.”
Education. I graduated from Morehead State University with a master’s degree in fine art. For my graduate work I completed independent studies in egg tempera, which meant I learned it on my own through much experimentation and time.