David DeJonge may be the world’s busiest photographer. DeJonge and his wife Gayle run two thriving photography and imaging businesses and two non-profits.
You may be familiar with the non-profit portion of DeJonge’s work, which has been featured on major television networks and countless other media outlets. We also featured it here a few years ago as DeJonge was putting together a traveling exhibition honoring World War I veterans printed on LexJet Water-Resistant Satin Cloth.
The idea for the traveling exhibition, geared toward students across the country, spawned from DeJonge’s photo documentary work with the last surviving WWI veterans as part of the Faces of Five Wars, covering WWI through Desert Storm.
The traveling exhibition then spawned a permanent exhibition at the Pentagon, a 90-minute feature-length documentary, the $3 million restoration of a World War I memorial on the National Mall, and the introduction of a law to build a national memorial to World War I on the Mall as well (HR 222: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/113/hr222).
The traveling exhibition was a hit, and continues to travel to schools and educational organizations. DeJonge estimates that 50,000 students have seen the exhibition.
“Over the years, the panels we printed for the exhibition have held up incredibly well. They were rolled up in a tube for about eight months at one point and we wondered what might have happened to them. We unrolled them and they were perfect; they weren’t wrinkled at all,” says DeJonge. “That show is back out on the road and we’re preparing for the 100th anniversary of World War I next year. Who would have thought this would be a 12-year journey?”
DeJonge is also spearheading a 90-minute documentary about the last surviving World War I veteran, Frank Buckles, that opened in Iowa on April 15. Buckles passed away in 2011 at the age of 110.
Demand was such that the film has been screened 24 more times since that initial screening. DeJonge also printed movie posters for the screenings on LexJet Premium Archival Matte Paper.
If that wasn’t enough, DeJonge recently launched Legacy Icons, which are reproductions of religious icons printed on multiple LexJet products including LexJet Sunset Velvet Rag and shipped worldwide. This is all in addition to the full-time high-end photography studio, DeJonge Studio in Grand Rapids, Mich.
DeJonge is often on the road overseeing his various projects, so he plugs in remotely to work on files and print remotely, while his wife handles the final production at the studio. Long 16-18 hour days are not unusual when DeJonge is on the road.
For more information about DeJonge’s efforts to honor World War I veterans, go to: