"With this year being such a crazy year, I thought – why not?"
Doing something a bit crazy to add to an already crazy year has worked out for Captured By Friday Photography owner and operator Joanna Piatek.
Entering the Electra Business and Innovation Awards after some encouragement by family and clients has resulted in being named as a finalist.
"I was really surprised and quite chuffed I have to say," Joanna said.
Taught photography skills by her father when she was younger which included film and dark room adventures, photography was always a passion for Joanna.
"I started Captured By Friday Photography almost 10 years ago to get myself 'back into photography' and do it professionally after 25 years in sales and marketing.
"Photography was a strong passion, but life took over and I had other corporate careers and family priorities in between, but always wanted to get into it fulltime."
Starting Captured By Friday, with the name inspiration coming from her Polish last name, Piatek, which means Friday in Polish, the business is well and truly a fulltime gig with the benefit of Joanna being able to choose her hours as a sole trader.
Captured By Friday is a photography business offering everything from photo shoots and in-house printing, to business solutions using photography to help grow the business.
"I started Captured By Friday with printing photography and canvas art for clients as I re-trained and worked on my digital skills and trained in journalism."
Constantly learning and evolving, photography gradually outweighed the printing side of the business, although Joanna still offers printing too, operating from her studio at Lindale which has lighting equipment, props and everything needed for photo shoots.
With many projects on the go including work for the Kapiti Coast Chamber of Commerce and working on more books after the success of Kapiti - A Portrait Through Food, as a sole trader Joanna is constantly working out how to diversify and scale her business without compromising her individuality.
"I am quite business orientated without being a big business, and I offer business solutions and ideas around photography to help other local business people and businesses grow – personally and professionally.
"I try to make it really easy for people to be photographed – whether it is a corporate head shot or a wedding/family scenario – I make them comfortable and make them understand they look fantastic.
"Most people hate having their photos taken, and it's really important to me that they walk away with a product that makes them feel great.
"There are some really good fellow photographers in Kāpiti, and like other photographers I like helping to create professional imagery as well as long term memories."
For Joanna, entering the awards is not about trying to prove she is the best, but about improving her business.
"It's about business attitude and innovation.
"I absolutely love my job and feel so grateful and privileged to live and work in Kāpiti."