What is Connected By Water®?
Connected By Water® is a way of life. It represents a people and community so tightly bound by their love and passion for oceans, bays, rivers, lakes, streams and all that lives within them. We embrace it. We work in it. We play in it. It’s our sport. Our muse. Our passion. Our soul. Our story. It intertwines us all, inspires us and crafts our lifestyle. It’s breathing in that beach salt air, relaxing lake side or taking in the island life. It goes beyond fishing, surfing, kayaking, paddle boarding, canoeing or boating – it’s the culture behind it all. Water connects all of us and has a hypnotic effect. It changes our mood and takes away our stress. It crosses social barriers and brings us together. It’s the one common thread that binds all of mankind. There’s a coastline within all of us.
All of these ideals explain the philosophy of our company. It’s our looking glass. We see the world through salt-covered glasses. We feel it in our mud-soaked toes. We aren’t just a brand and not only an art studio. We are an end-to-end creative company that reflects our obsession for life on the water through artfully crafted apparel, products and original works of art. Communicating through art is our way of celebrating and sharing our love for the water with everyone. No matter where we are. No matter where we are doing… We are always Connected By Water®.
Dennis Friel’s artwork celebrates the coastal culture. His talents are a hybrid of design and fine art. Over the course of his storied career, he has pulled upon his mastery of a range of mediums to shine through and solidify himself as a creative influencer in the marine industry, especially in his home state of Florida, which he calls the “mecca of marine art.”
Dennis is known for bringing game fish and underwater environments to life with vivid imagery that shows the constant flow of the ocean and the power of apex predators. He works across a wide variety of mediums but maintains a unique, fluid style with a soulful and innovative approach.
“I’m striving to be different and go against the grain of what’s been out there,” he says. “I always push myself on the work we do. I learn on every project. I want to come up with new things that have never been seen before.”
He pulls from his experiences on the water, travels and his Florida surroundings as his greatest influence, and art admirers and ocean lovers have embraced his approach. Dennis has built a body of work that is supported by collectors and clientele from all corners of the globe. From Costa Rica to Hawaii, Africa to Dubai, Australia to the Outer Banks — if it’s Connected By Water®, chances are you will find his artwork there.
Dennis Friel’s artwork is displayed at the world’s premiere fishing tournaments, on the transoms of top vessels, the backs of fishing team jerseys and within the pages of the most respected publications. From Jimmy Buffett’s new vessel, Last Mango to Jimmy Johnson’s National Billfish Championship, the Custom Shootout and many more, Dennis has worked with the elite of the elite.
His talents and drive propelled him to become a nationally recognized AIP artist for the United States Mint, an honor that only 27 artists in the United States can claim. Dennis is a monthly illustration contributor for several top-level fishing publications, a brand ambassador for Maui Jim and Olukai and was recently named The Billfish Foundation’s ‘Artist of the Year,’ one of several honors received during his more than two decades bringing the marine world to life in art form.
Thousands of boaters admire the artist’s large-scale works adorning the Intracoastal bridges of Pompano Beach, Florida, every week. “Bridges are designed to connect people to places and each other,” Dennis says. “My goal for this project was to create a series of images portraying the diversity within our local marine ecosystem and a bionetwork that harmoniously reflects a sense of pride for an oceanic community that is so tightly bound to it.” Dennis received the distinguished 2019 Pompano Beach Chamber of Commerce’s Arts and Culture Award for his efforts on this beautification project.
As a true conservationist, he holds his support of our natural resources and fisheries unquestionably close to his heart. His charitable work for the Coastal Conservation Association (CCA), The Billfish Foundation (TBF), Bonefish and Tarpon Trust and the International Game Fish Association has been done with a great amount of purpose. He uses his creativity to help many charitable organizations with past efforts for the Boys and Girls Club, Surfers for Autism and a current relationship with Freedom Fighters Outdoors (FFO) and the Special Olympics among his proudest pro-bono efforts to date.
Dennis Friel is an artist, fisherman, loving husband and father of two children. Along with a dedicated staff, he operates a full-time art studio, which he’s labelled Connected By Water®. Servicing clients with custom artwork, apparel, boat wraps and accessory printing needs, they continue to build upon their line of branded apparel and private artwork collections.