Chris Demarest is an author and illustrator of over one hundred titles. FIREFIGHTERS A to Z was chosen as a New York Times “Best Book” 2000. In recent years his focus has shifted toward documenting people in unusual professions: For a year, he flew with the USCG out of Cape Cod researching his book: MAYDAY! MAYDAY!: A Coast Guard Rescue. Two years later he flew with the Hurricane Hunters into Hurricane Ivan researching HURRICANE HUNTERS: Riders On The Storm.
In recent years his work has expanded beyond children’s books. In 2006, the USCG sent him (as an official Coast Guard artist) to the Persian Gulf to live with and document crew work guarding the oil platforms off the coast of Iraq. Last year was spent flying with DHART, the local trauma center medical evacuation team out of Dartmouth=Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, NH. An article he wrote on that experience appeared in Dartmouth Medicine magazine (summer ’08). He later spent time at the children’s ward chronicling patient and medical staff work.
In 2011 he began a journey which continues today. Sparked by the black and white image of a WW II fighter pilot, he began working on a series of portraits of WW II people who contributed both at war and on the home front. Set up at the Women’s Memorial at the gates of Arlington National Cemetery, he worked for two years, stockpiling over seventy portraits. In May 2013 he began a road tour in his hometown of Amherst MA which went from the promise of one month to a plea to stay as long as possible. That gig ran the entire summer. In the fall he heads to Texas and wintering in CA with venues growing. Follow his work via his blog.
His most recent picture book: ARLINGTON: A Story of Our Nation’s Cemetery, published Fall 2010, Roaring Brook Press.