“I didn’t see you there,” is an unusual compliment. However, to Dennis Krull, a multi-disciplinary artist from north Moorhead, it’s a compliment that indicates he is succeeding at his photographic work. While Dennis does professional headshots, commercial and advertising work, where his event photography is concerned, being unnoticed helps him provide unique views of any occasion.
“I don’t direct people, I just watch and record. My job isn’t to interrupt, it’s to capture what’s there. It’s amazing how many people don’t see me when I am almost seven feet tall, standing ten feet away, and holding a camera, but they don’t,” Dennis says, his eyes crinkling with humor.
His quiet humor and rich voice are an integral part of Dennis’ appeal. His calm and steady demeanor defines an incredibly prolific artist. Under his business name of Five Foot Twenty Design Lounge, Dennis is active in multiple venues of photography, fine art and graphic design.
It’s like being a painter and a sculptor at the same time. You add and subtract and play.”
“I like to play,” he says simply of the complicated and layered photographic art images he displays and sells at Gallery 4 in downtown Fargo, an artist cooperative gallery of which he is a long-standing member. Each piece may utilize 20 images or more worked together from different times, days or places. He continually adds and subtracts bits and pieces, as he works to build something completely new.
Dennis’ encaustic work started out as a method to enhance his already complex and engaging photography. However, the more he worked with the medium, the more he fell in love with it for its own sake.
“It’s like being a painter and a sculptor at the same time. You add and subtract and play.”
Encaustic is the ancient art form utilizing beeswax, damar resin and pigment—and has a distinctly modern take with Dennis’ use of clear colors and playful imagery, also on display for purchase at Gallery 4.
From someone so tall, it’s ironic that many of his compositions are from perspectives so low to the ground. Dennis says he literally laid on the street early one morning to capture the historic Fargo Theatre and the morning sunrise.
However, Dennis’s art cannot be confined to the gallery. In addition to his photography and encaustic skills, he is also a talented illustrator. His illustrations grace a number of children’s books, CD covers and magazines. In addition, as a freelance graphic designer, he says he does “a little bit of everything”, including designing book covers for a publisher in Hawaii.
It is Dennis’ diverse creative nature that ensures that most visitors and residents of the Fargo-Moorhead-West Fargo area who have never heard his name have still likely been unknowingly exposed to his art. Partnering with everyone from small, local companies to large entities like Walmart, he has designed everything from CD covers to prominent signage to billboards.
“It’s fun when you drive around town and you can see all the things you’ve worked on. I did that, and that and that….oh, and that. But nobody knows,” he says with a smile.