Dennis was raised in a small community in central Indiana. His interest in the arts eventually led him to graduate from DePaw University in Indiana, where he received a BA in studio art and economics. A curiosity for the American West and passion for fine art ultimately drove Dennis to leave behind his profession and move to New Mexico in 1996. “My business career provided me valuable experience but my heart was always in the arts". Settling first in Abiquiu, a local business owner introduced Dennis to Charlie Favour, a well known leatherworker and jeweler based out of Santa Fe. Under Charlie’s apprenticeship, Dennis learned the lost art of leather braiding and gained an important mentor.
In 2000, Dennis relocated to Santa Fe and began selling and creating his own leather and jewelry designs. To this day he continues to work as a full time artist, constantly striving to develop his skills year after year by studying the old jewelry of the southwest.