I had an advantage when Halloween rolled around every year as a kid. If I needed makeup, I just happened to have an award-winning artist as my grandfather. 

My grandfather is Ludlow Thorston. He and my grandmother Nell have had a successful art gallery in Island Heights for almost 30 years. The Ludlow Thorston Gallery. When they first started, they had three galleries going in Bay Head, Seaside Park, and Island Heights. My grandfather is going to be 91 in January, and he continues to paint. He  and he and my grandmother continue to operate the business in Island Heights. My grandfather continues to paint.

Without question, "Poppi" is the wisest man I know. The advice he has imparted on me has been key to getting through some pretty difficult times and becoming the man I am today. He's really a smart, funny and thoughtful guy.

He has lived a very interesting life. He's served in the war, he was a Good Humor man, an art professor, and business owner.

Past Halloween's wouldn't have been the same without his help. Here he gets me ready to be Dracula at what I think is age six or seven. My bro James is the Devil.

(photo: Matt Ryan, Townsquare Media)
(photo: Matt Ryan, Townsquare Media)

And the finished product...

(photo: Matt Ryan, Townsquare Media)

This was a totally different Halloween, but I like this pic. That's my brother James, the devil.

(photo: Matt Ryan, Townsquare Media)