Artist of the month - November 2018 - dennis morton


Dennis Morton's initial work in New England was as a portrait artist.  He bagan his formal training as an apprentice under Richard Whitney in 1973.  He worked on portraits of the Secretary of the Navy, James Webb, Cardinal Medeiros and other profile portraits.  In 1988, Morton was honored by Governor John Sanunu at the New Hampshire State House where 25 of his paintings were exhibited for 2 weeks.

Moving to Hawaii in 1991, he continued to receive commissions in portrait painting.  He painted portraits of 3 circuit judges, Father Damien for the Catholic Church in Molokai, William Waddell the last Buffalo Soldier, John Lydgate and family in Kauai, and Father Mackey of Chamindade.  He was also fortunate to paint Glen Campbell and family.

In 2012 he was commissioned to paint Patty Hastie, George Clooney's wife in the movie "The Descendants".  The portrait of Patty ended up on the cutting room floor.  The director, Alex Payne did a follow-up called the "Real Descendants" in which he interviewed John Morgan, the head of Kaaawa Valley, along with others about the Hawaiian Alli and its merging with the wealthy foreigners.  Alex sent Cammy Spenser in L.A. to John Morgan's office where she saw the painting of Puu Ohulehule.  She decided to show the painting morphing into reality to start her documentary.

Dennis has sold paintings to Richard Chamberlain, John Travolta and Glen Campbell.  Some of his landscapes have been sold to wealthy clients on Oahu and have been in the background of at least 6 episodes of Hawauu 5-O.  In the mid 90's he bagan aggressively pursuing his interest and talents in landscape painting.  Many of his pieces reflect the area of windward Oahu and Kauai.  Thru the years he moved back and forth from New England and Hawaii, painting many studies and paintings in Plein Air.  He refers to his style as visual impressionism, which can be explained in Richard Whitney's book "Painting the Visual Impression" whereby it is a combination of classical realism and impressionist color notes.

Dennis is now painting Florida landscapes  and is continuing to paint portraits and landscapes.  Dennis resides in Ft. Myers and is teaching classes at the Cape Coral Art League and private classes.  For more information, visit or call 239-440-0027 regarding classes and commissioned art work.