It has come to my attention, I have not properly introduced myslef.  My name is Lisa Begin-Kruysman and some people might know me by my artwork, not my writing (yet).

I grew up in Hackensack, NJ, and I have had the good fortune to claim many great places as temporary home, or hang out. For the past 15 years, I’ve lived in a beautiful wooded waterfront community in Ocean County (NJ) with husband, Rich, and 8 year old Hooper, the dog. 

Before living this peaceful life, I was caught up in the hustle and bustle of New York City, working as a recruiter for what was called then, Home Box Office, Inc.  I had an office, with a view of Bryant Park and even an assistant, all before turning 30! What did I do? I resigned, traveled to an art school in Italy and came home to become a full-time artist.  Some days I think of what could of been, but then I look out my studio window, at my dog, and hubby  and wonder no more! Living by the water,  isn’t too shabby!

My work focuses on vintage postcards incorporated into paintings. You can learn more about this at my website, www.postcardart.us. My work is rewarding, collaborating with clients to create that perfect gift, busy at arts events almost every weekend in the summer and fall.  As you might guess, some of my favorite postcards are those featuring dogs.  Of course, I intend to use some of them in my book project.

As a creative person coming off the holiday high, the new year is a scary place.  With commissioned work almost complete, future shows weeks away…(and freezing temps) it is hard to stay motivated.  Writing has been a perfect remedy, a way to keep focused.

I just have to say a thank you to my “kid” sister, Manette Loudon. She has been invaluable to me, helping with this Blog, for instance.  I am a noted techno-klutz, and she has been my Blog coach.  My sister likes dogs, but if there was a National Horse Week, she would be saddling up and blazing the trail.

When we were 14, and 13, respectively, my parents whisked us away from Hackensack, to Boulder, Colorado, for a year.  Six of us and a toy poodle made the trek in a station wagon.  Along the way, just 2 hours from our destination, our car was flattened by a double wide.  The car was totalled, but we all miraculously survived.  Did I mention, my parents hadn’t secured a home base for us in Boulder? So carless, and temporarily homeless, we entered Boulder in a police cruiser!  Oh, but here is the “funniest” part, in the middle of all of this, my sister asked my parents if she could have a horse when we got to Boulder.

Long story short, within 48 hours, we had rented a beautiful ranch house on North Broadway, just a few miles from Colorado University where my dad would work.  The house came equiped with a few acres and, conveniently, a stable for a horse.  After the first day of school, my sister arrived home, horse in hand.  A beautiful half Arabian, half quarter horse named Muna del Adrienne.  The horse had been abused and in need of safekeeping.  My sister was happy to oblige. She spent a memorable 10 months with that horse, they were inseperable.  It was a sad day for all when we returned east and had to say good-bye to Muna.

I tell this story because it highlights the power of creative visualization and faith, (okay, maybe some luck). But at this time of year, it is a nice memory for me, and a lesson for everyone that it doesn’t hurt to think big.

Manette, by the way, is a talented documentary producer, her documentaries on serious subjects like the overmedicating of our children and our autism epidemic have won awards at the Hoboken and Key West Film festivals, among others.

And a I would just like to wish my niece and god daughter, Roxy  a Very Happy 15th Birthday up there in snowy New York state.

258 days to National Dog Week!

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