In May of 1980 right after college, Roth moved to New York City. Despite the financial hardships of being a fledgling artist in New York (which included living in his car for a time), he painted cityscapes, views in Central Park and street scenes throughout the city and sold them to passersby off of his portable easel.
In 1982, a French family offered Roth the opportunity to live in their home in the South of France for several months in exchange for a painting. He then moved to the Paris suburb of Le Pre St. Gervais and lived there through the mid '90s. While in Paris, he continued to paint city life, cafes and landscapes of Europe. Those paintings were shown in several solo exhibitions in France and the U.S. including the French Library of Boston, the Copley Society of Boston, and several group exhibitions including the Grand Palais of Paris.