Denis has been influenced by the powerful images art can produce all his life. Some of his earliest memories are of dramatic, atmospheric illustrations from his childhood books, which filled him with excitement and sometimes fear.
He was brought up in an artistic environment, as his mother, Juliet Pannett MBE, was a professional portrait painter all her life and it was through her instruction and encouragement that Denis took up painting in the first place.
Sadly, she died in 2005 having painted two portraits of HM The Queen, nine Prime Ministers and leaving 21 portraits in the permanent collection of the National Portrait Gallery.
Denis started exhibiting in local galleries and the London Exhibitions and in 1975 was elected a member of the Guild of Aviation Artists followed in 1979 by being made an honorary freeman of the Painter Stainers Company. By 1982 Denis found he had more art work than he could cope with, so resigned from De Beers with whom he had been for 20 years and went full time into art. and in 1985 was invited to become a member of The Wapping Group of Artists and from 2009 – 2012 was their President. He was also made a Fellow of the Guild of Aviation Artists in 2012.