Born in 1953 Dennis Spicer studied at Byam Shaw School of Painting in London from 1979 to 1983. Following this and remaining in London he combined teaching with his painting. Then moving with his family to the Wirral he concentrated on painting full time.
Referring to his approach Dennis explains his work as –
‘Initially being guided by light. Particularly a back light, or contre jour, coming from behind the subject, casting shadows onto a flat surface, which gives me scope to introduce rich dark colours. Animating the flat surfaces in the painting and giving interest to the eye, that is what interests me. My approach will vary from using relatively small brushes that produce a fairly accurate rendering of the subject, to using larger brushes allowing me to lay on the paint more thickly. Sometimes the paintings will remain fairly close to reality, sometimes they will become more flattened perhaps incorporating pattern to produce something more akin to a design, but always there is a concern to paint how the light strikes the subjects and how that transforms them into a good subject for a painting that is worthwhile spending time on’.
Those painters that influence Dennis’s work are mainly painters of stillness and quiet, from Northern Renaissance artists like Membling, Van De Weyden, Durer and Vermeer to Bonnard and Morandi.