Trude Lisagor began painting in 1997 at the age of 46, a year after her diagnosis of multiple sclerosis. She had experienced many significant losses including no longer being able to teach elementary school full time. So, she was ready for some gains. Trude was encouraged to try something new, something creative, and was attracted to watercolor.

She took lessons with wonderful Margaret Meade, a professional artist and master teacher from Caracas, Venezuela. Her weekly visits to Margaret's Northern Virginia basement studio changed her life. Margaret taught her to see the shapes that exist everywhere around us. According to Trude, "I began to observe what I hadn’t truly noticed before".

A few years ago (Trude and Mike moved to an island in the Pacific Northwest in 2004), she began to expand her personal boundaries even further by painting abstract images. She was drawn to an artist, Mike Biskup, whose watercolors were hanging in the Art Project, a local gallery. Instead of painting still life scenes, he creates pieces using color, lines and shapes. Over the summer, Trude and her grandson attended one of his demonstrations and she was inspired to venture into the abstract. A few months later, she painted with Mike in his Port Townsend studio. With jazz playing in the background and non-judgmental conversation, she experienced a whole new way to have fun with painting which has continued to this day! Several of her watercolors can be viewed in the Trude Art section of this site.

​In 2009, shortly after her mom passed away, Trude discovered a cardboard box containing a worn, cloth-bound journal. Inside, she found short personal essays written by the grandmother she had never met. This collection of words from her namesake, which reveals the wisdom gained by a Jewish immigrant from Nazi Germany, leapt from the pages and into Trude's heart. In Small Things, Trude shares these essays along with her own reflections.


Once upon a time, Mike Lisagor was an aerospace and IT engineer, and then an industry executive. He finally relinquished his suit and tie to start a consulting company, Celerity Works, in 1999. Although mostly retired (from work), he spends most of his time writing essays and books, playing jazz and blues piano, creating graphic art, and hiking with his wife of 50+ years on an island in the Pacific Northwest.

Mike's books include (see the book section of this site): Eleven Life Lessons for Teenagers (and Everyone Else), Personal Growth in the Time of COVID, My Fifty Years of Buddhist Practice, Romancing the Buddha (3rd Edition) which he adapted into a successful one-man show that can be watched on YouTube.

His business books include (see Celerityworks.com): The Essential Guide to Managing a Government Project, How to Win in the Government Market (with Mark Amtower), and How to Develop a Winning SBIR Proposal (with Eric Adolphe).

​Micke has written hundreds of magazine articles and blogs on a variety of business and Buddhist-related topics.

Mike's graphic art and photographs have appeared in the Boston Globe, Bainbridge Island Magazine, Living Buddhism as well as in several local galleries and in the lobbies of several physical therapy offices.