When launching a new business, having a mentor is invaluable. Luckily for Kristen Bangs, she didn’t have to look very far to find hers. Her own father is a classically trained artist, who later in life started a creative business manufacturing soft pastels, which are used by some of the world’s greatest fine artists. His dual career path served as a roadmap for Kristen’s own; after decade and half in the corporate world (while also raising a family), Kristen traded in her spreadsheets for sketching paper, and enrolled in art school. After two years, she was ready to become full-time Maker and on whim bought a laser cutter — thus meeting her new mechanical partner in (artistic) crime.