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Glass sculptor rekindles her passion for the arts

Palomar Student Artist Kris Bandanas proudly poses with some of the blown glass artwork that she has created in her glass blowing class on October 24, 2016. Joe Dusel / The Telescope.
Palomar Student Artist Kris Bandanas proudly poses with some of the blown glass artwork that she has created in her glass blowing class on October 24, 2016. Joe Dusel / The Telescope.

Second year Palomar College student Kris Bagdanas, 41, can often be found in the glassblowing studio on campus, where some of her greatest ideas become reality.

After suffering an injury to her back while working for the city of Oceanside, Bagdonas decided to go back to school to pursue a career in art, her biggest passion in life. Now a 3D Sculpture Major, she is thrilled to be back in the art field.

Bagdonas is spending this semester taking glass blowing for the first time. It is something she has always had strong interest in, often having dabbled in the art by creating beads and small sculptures at her home.

“I actually started with a pottery class,” said Bagdonas. “The classroom is right next to [the glass blowing studio], so I was always watching the glassblowers and thinking wow, that looks really cool.”

Glassblowing is a process of repeatedly gathering molten glass onto a steel pipe, shaping the glass, and blowing into the pipe to cause the glass to expand. A great amount of care must be taken to make sure the glass does not slide off the pipe.

Bagdonas does a lot of lampworking out of her home as well, a type of glasswork where a torch or lamp is used to melt glass. She’s enjoyed the fact that Palomar has brought her closer to glassblowing, and is thankful for the larger projects Palomar has allowed her to begin.

After receiving her 3D sculpture degree, Bagdonas plans to open up her own business as a 3D sculpture multi-media artist.

“I’ll design anything, as long as the big companies are coming to me and giving me their money, I get to sit back and do what I love,” she said.

Besides owning her own business, she also plans on becoming an art teacher so she can teach children all different kinds of art.

Next year, Bagdonas is planning on being one of the glass blowing teacher-assistants, so that she can help teach the first-years. She hopes her passion for art is something she can pursue for years to come.

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