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For My Next Act ...

Vanessa Doleshal went from a career in digital media for to launching an interior design business during the pandemic.
Claire Hart
Claire Hart

A local photographer captured resilient Las Vegans pivoting to new ventures

I started this photo series in hopes of reflecting how a city that hosts large-scale events could adapt after the onset of a pandemic. My interest was personal: During COVID, I lost 80 percent of my business (conventions and weddings), and I wanted to see how others were pivoting. The goal was to showcase subjects who’d lost Vegas-specific jobs, and capture each of them in their new and old occupations — in one image. The hardest part was finding people willing to tell the world about how they were surviving; many didn’t want to admit that the change was real or potentially permanent. Some were even emotional about being back in their old uniforms or costumes, because it had been a year since they had put them on. (I was having the same experience after having to take a part-time job at a local golf course.) However, it’s been so rewarding to see the excitement and hope they have with their new ventures — and life beyond COVID.