What I’ve Been Doing Since I Left Kelby Media (and a Big Announcement!)

In Featured, Photography by Matt K43 Comments

Hey everyone. I’ve been getting a lot of questions lately on how things are going, what I’m up to, where I’m training, etc… So I thought I’d catch everyone up on what’s been going on in the last year, since I made the move to ON1.

First, I Didn’t Move to Portland

First off, I still live in Tampa, FL. I didn’t move to Portland. I love Portland, Oregon and the Pacific Northwest, but I’m not sure I’m cut out to live there. Plus, my wife and kids would totally revolt against me as they’ve built their life here in Tampa as well. I do travel out there every 6-8 weeks or so, but I’m still based out of my home in good ole’ sunny warm Tampa, Florida.

My ON1 Evolution

I started at ON1 to help bring some more education, training, and inspiration to mix in with the apps. I really admired Craig’s (the president of ON1) vision for how they needed to have more than just software. Craig felt ON1 needed to have education and inspiration built around the apps, to really help people with workflow. I’ve always felt that photography is about so much more than just the apps you use to edit your photos. It’s about the experience of taking the photos and the styles you use to edit them. I feel that including just part of that experience, is cutting people short when it comes to learning to improve.

My First Big Project

Shortly after I started last year (November 2014), we introduced a paid program at the end of that year called “12 Months with Matt”. It ended up being a huge hit with thousands of people signing up. It was basically a 1-year membership to a group that I led. Instead of just repeating training courses I’d done elsewhere, we made it more about workflow and interaction. Each month I delivered videos based on my portfolio photos that went over the gear and settings used. I showed the good photos from the shoot as well as the bad. Then went over how I picked my favorite. Finally, I went through the entire post-processing for that photo, all the way to the final image and even the options I would choose when printing it. What made it really cool was that the group also had an online component with discussions and photo critiques by me. So it had a really personal feel to it

It ended up being a huge hit. And honestly it was one of the best teaching experiences I’ve ever had. It’s one thing to make a video and never seen or hear from anyone who watches it. But it’s another to really get to see how you’re helping people, and watch them improve throughout the year.

More Training Throughout the Year

Over the course of the year, I built a library of training courses on Lightroom, ON1, and Photoshop. And we had some others do courses for us as well. My goal with the videos was to give people a foundation. Rather than answer the same questions over and over again, I can point people to a video. Then, with the “12 Months” group we had above, they had some place to go ask questions and get answers.

Introducing ON1 PLUS (the “big announcement”)

The really cool thing for me is to see how all of this evolved in to a brand new product. Over at ON1 we know we have awesome photo editing apps. And we know we created a really great learning experience this past year with the “12 Months” program I mentioned above. So… we’ve spent the last year putting this all together in to one product called ON1 Plus. It’s basically a membership where you get the ON1 apps, training, and personal coaching through our private member website.

It’s kind of the entire photography experience all in one membership and it all revolves around this personal coaching concept. We’ve created videos that serve as the foundation. There’s photography videos by one of the other main coaches (Hudson Henry), and ON1, Lightroom and Photoshop video courses from me. It’s like your text book in a college class.

But reading the book (or watching the videos in this case) is only part of it. You have to go to class to really tie things together with discussion and inspiration. That’s where the private website comes in. If you have a question, there’s a discussion area to ask it. You can submit a photo, that you just tried a technique on from one of the videos, and get a critique on the photo or the post processing style. Got gear questions? We have a place to get personalized advice. And you’ll be able to submit photos to us to edit for you, so you can get a different outlook and idea for some editing workflow. There’s live “ask us anything” videos that’ll happen each month. And best of all, all of this resides in the website so you can go back and refer to a discussion or watch a previous video whenever you want.

And, on top of all of it, we give you kick-butt photo editing apps to tie all of this together. And if you use Lightroom, Photoshop, or Capture One, we’ve got videos to help you put all these apps together in to a workflow that makes sense.

There’s a lot of specials going on right now, so if you’re interested this is a great time to jump in. Also, there’s a video on this page that helps explain a lot, so watch that first if you’re interested. But here’s some links if you want to find out more:

• If you were a part of the 12 Months with Matt group last year, and you already own Photo 10, we have a killer deal for you. (you must own Photo 10).

• If you already own ON1 Photo 10 apps, and you want in on the coaching click here (link).

• If you don’t own anything ON1 yet, but you want to join in, click here (link). You’ll get the apps and the personal coaching for an entire year.

Questions About PLUS?

Okay, I know there’s going to be a ton of questions about PLUS. First off, it’s not a subscription. When you become a member, you get to download the software and keep it. Forever! Rent free. As long as you’re a member, you get updates, new versions, etc… And if you don’t want to be a member next year, you’ll be able to purchase the software outright, just like you always have. And before you freak out, if you don’t do PLUS you’ll still get all of the same free tutorials, presets, rewards and things that we’ve done in the past. PLUS means more. We’re adding to the ON1 experience for people that want it, not taking away from the experience from people that just want apps.

But, rather than answer all the questions here, they’ve already been answered in the FAQ on the ON1 website. So here’s a link and you can read more about it. Remember though, we’re only adding to the experience for people that want it. So if you’re an ON1 app user, and don’t want to join PLUS, rest assured your experience will continue to be the same that is has been in the past.

Do I Still Teach Adobe Stuff?

Okay, back to what’s going on these days. I get asked a lot whether or not I do/use/teach Adobe products still. I definitely still do. However, I don’t communicate with the Adobe team anymore though. I suppose the fact I work for a semi-competing product that it’s understandable. But I’m hoping it’ll change. Most ON1 users work with LR, and I still talk to thousands of LR and Photoshop users during the year, and I’d like to continue to voice their feedback to Adobe. I still am a hard-core Lightroom user though. My ON1 videos show how I incorporate the ON1 apps with Lightroom and why. But LR is still a part of my workflow, mostly because it’s the best raw editor out there. I’ve been using Capture One a bit lately too. It’s very different from LR, but also a great app, so I’m holding my thoughts until I can really give it some time.

I also use Photoshop when I have to, but I’ve found that as LR and ON1 become more powerful, I go to Photoshop less and less.

My goal is, and has always been, that regardless of who makes the app or where it comes from, I want to teach you the best way to do things from my experience. And I’ll continue to do that.

Overall, It’s Going Great!

I’m really lucky to have a lot of great people out there that follow me, but also seem to genuinely care about whether I’m happy or not. So believe it or not, I get this question a lot. How’s it going? Am I happy? You betcha! I’m very fortunate and lucky for my time at Kelby media and I’d never trade it. But things are going great for me right now. For starters I traveled A LOT back then. I never knew the toll it was taking on my family. Wives and kids are very forgiving and very supportive. So I never knew what I was missing, because they really wanted too support me. But being home has been the absolute number 1 best thing to happen to me, my wife, and my kids. My wife and I have become best friends again (we both work from home now). Maybe being around each other every day could have gone in another direction, and we could have gotten on each other’s nerves. But it’s been awesome for us, and a great way for us to reconnect as the kids get older (my oldest is in High School). I’m also able to drive my kids to and from school, and I can’t tell you how much that time in the car means to me. Just to be there when they get home, even if it’s just for 5 minutes to sneak away from my office to see how their day went, is invaluable. So on a personal level it’s been freakin’ awesome.

On a professional level, I’ve been able to grow in a huge way. Everything I’ve mentioned above, and how I’ve really learned how to connect with people, and the ways that people learn, has been such a great experience for me. Sure, I don’t necessarily get out in front of the live audiences as much anymore, but I’m able to reach and help MANY more people online than I was ever able to before. And ON1 PLUS will only help make this grow for me.

So here I am a year later. Many less frequent flyer miles on Delta. Many less nights at hotels. Many less first-class perks and upgrades at the airport. But a very happy person. Both professionally and personally. For some one that thrives on education and helping people, I’ve got a really great time ahead of me.

And if you’re up for it, I’d love for you to join me at ON1 Plus (but make sure you look above if you already own Photo 10). If you’ve ever wanted a really personal and unique photography learning experience, I think you’ll find it fits right in. Thanks for checking in. Have a good one!



  1. Larry Bartholomew

    I’m glad to hear you’re happy with your move. I enjoyed 12 months with Matt. I continue to be a fan. I’m looking forward to what OnOne Plus has to offer. One minor complaint, however. You had indicated in a video that there would be a special deal coming for 12 MWM members for the new OnOne Plus. I signed up on 16 Dec for $39. Now I find out I could have done so for $29 if I had waited another two weeks that’s a bit disapointing.

    1. Author
      Matt K

      Hey Larry. Sorry about that. You’ll get a refund though. I sent your message in to Customer service so you should hear something soon. Thx!

    2. salsaguy

      Huh? I was a 12 months with Matt subscriber and used the link to get the Plus membership but it was $129 not 29. Please advise.

  2. Alfredo Perez

    Well Matt great to hear you are doing great and I am curious to check the ON1 offering. It is interesting though, that you are thinking to migrate in the future to ON1 and couple of years ago I mentioned in one of your posts the problem of using collection and other LR specific features. If a change occurred it would be too cumbersome to migrate and that is why I exploit LR but use a file structure that provide enough information for a migration process. Anyway we had a discussion and a different view point but I am interested to know what are the benefits of ON1 versus LR and migration considerations. Thanks and good luck…ah and also great decision to move to Sony

  3. James K

    Always loved what you did at Kelby Media as well caught much of your training at Creative Live so it was a no brainer when I joined 12 Months with Matt K. For mr, I paid the $129 so it would include the next upgrade to version 11 next year. It’s well worth the cash!

    1. Author
      Matt K

      Thanks Howard! Great seeing you in October. Hopefully we’ll run in to each other soon again. I need to get out your way to do some shooting.

  4. Paul Ciura

    Glad to see things are working out as planned! I just talked to Blake today about you and what do you know…you post this update. Crazy!

  5. Doug Z

    Glad to hear things are going well and you are getting to spend more time at home now. All the best on the new project and all of your work at On1. Blessings to you and yours.

  6. Ezra

    That is really great to hear Matt, I wish you much success in the future in the world of photography. I do remember seeing you and Scott Kelby doing a promotional video for the Canon 7d Mark II late last year.

  7. David B.

    Great to hear what a good move it was for you Matt. And keeping the Florida weather and home location sounds like a big plus. Do you ever talk with Scott? I imagine everyone hopes you two still have a decent relationship as you are both respected and liked in the industry.

  8. Mike Wilson

    A note about time away from one’s family; My father spent 28 years of his life on the water as a merchant seaman. He hated the time away and getting seasick every new trip out. However, I grew up thinking that my father was the best man who ever lived. Still do. When he was home, he was home! 24/7. My dad taught me so much in those times we all had him at home. I know things I would never learn from an eight-to-five father. I can tie an bowline knot in less time than you can say it. I can figure out why a 1953 Henry J car won’t start (I know, a bit dated, right?) and get it running. I can build a pretty good carport and run a straight edge on a fresh stucco corner. Stuff like that. Oh, and all of the stuff like honesty, hard work, promises – and like that. Also, I learned that the time we give each other is worth the time we spend waiting for it. Matt, don’t sweat the small stuff. In my early life it was not the hours, it was the quality of the hours.

    1. salsaguy

      On1 10 is part of your Plus subscription and you can keep it forever even if you decide later to not keep the Plus subscription.

    2. Albie

      No you don’t. I didn’t get the On1 10 upgrade, but I did sign up for On1 Plus for $29.

  9. Joe Schmitt

    Question…I’m a Lightroom user now but love Matt’s teaching and wonder if anyone else made the transition from Lightroom to On1. Pros, cons, good, bad? Thank you!

    1. salsaguy

      No need to ditch LR. Matt uses both LR and On1 in all his training / winning videos. Use the best features of each app to get the most out of your pix

  10. Eric Doggett

    Hey! Good to hear from you/see this post. I remember thinking a while back that it’s been about a year. Glad to hear things are going great for you!

  11. Bob Diefenbacher

    Hi Matt,
    It’s great to hear all is going well for you. I can relate to your desire to be home as your kids get older. I am retired, but before that I worked for IBM and moved frequently so that my kids were I six different schools by 1985. They turned out fine, but I traveled a lot and missed much of the details during their teen age years. I did promise them I would not move while they were in high school and stuck to that even though it meant leaving Big Blue. But that was far and away one of the best decisions I ever made.

    I have found that your work with OnOne pretty much negates the need to maintain a subscription to Kelby. I hope that you can develop a useful working relationship with Adobe. On the other hand I would hate to see Adobe somehow embed the features of OnOne in a version of LR. IMHO the big guys get pi**ed when little guys encroach on the market they feel they own.

    Good luck and Happy New Year.

  12. Dennis Fitzpatrick


    I have followed your work for many years through Kelby, seminars, webinars and online training. I have also used an been a fan of On1 for several years so the combination of you with On1 was good news to me. We do not personally know one another but I have wondered how the change to On1 affected you. I am glad that it you are so happy with the change personally and professionally.

    Happy New Year!

  13. Hal

    Hey Matt,
    Followed you at Kelby and now On1, love your teaching and photo work. Good luck with your projects, signed up for the year and looking forward to another great year of photography education.

  14. Jack Larson

    I am confused. I have ON1 Photo 10. Until Dec. 31, I can get ON1 Plus for $29.99 for 9 mo.; or, I can get one year for $129.99 (at a $ 20 savings). Why would I choose the 1 yr. option at only a $ 20 savings? I can only guess that if I choose the 9 mo. option, I will have to pay the full upgrade price for ON1 Photo 11. Is there more to it than that?

  15. Patricia Davidson

    Hi Matt, Glad to hear things are going well with the new job! You are an excellent educator so I am sure you are a great asset to On1. I love their resize software. I use it all the time for large print orders.

    All the best to you and your family in 2016!

  16. Richard Herschberger

    I have Perfect Photo Suite 9 Premium and was on the understanding that when the new versions including ON1 Photo 10 comes out that I would be updated at no charge but that doesn’t seem to be the case after all. I seldom use PPS9 now but maybe ON1 10 has more to offer. I do quite well with Adobe LR and Photoshop and a couple others. I may consider the $29 but won’t loose sleep over it.

  17. salsaguy

    Very very happy for you Matt. Very jealous as that would be my dream job to do photography and help teach others. Keep up the great work.

  18. Jim Fair

    Matt, I am sorry to have to make a negative comment about ON1 on your page but I assume this is the only place where there may be some help. What happened to the tech support? If you look under support there is only articles, no direct contact to support.ON1 used to have a great product with outstanding support, no more. ON1 has become very proficient at developing upgrades for $99 and selling thier product, but have have an issue and there is nobody to help. 10 will be the last time I purchase to ON1

  19. Andy H


    Very interested that you have recently switched to Sony. I’ve done the same and I’m loving it. As a bonus, I also discovered Capture One through the Express version for Sony Cameras and as a RAW editor it has the edge on Lightroom for sure – after negotiating the learning curve. I’d really like to hear what you think, and perhaps how you would integrate Capture One into your workflow.

    While I’m here, I’d also like to chip in on the critical comments that have been posted recently regarding ON1. I’ll be honest, I’m not a fan of the ON1 business model – charging $100/year for upgrades when competing plug-in companies offer free upgrades for life is not the best and I am yet to find $100 worth of benefit from upgrading from v9 to v10. The initial announcement of ON1 Plus was also entirely underwhelming, until they finally acknowledged their existing customer base and offered a discounted version for $30. Given all this disappointment, I seriously considered making Photo 10 my last product from ON1. However, I decided to give ON1 Plus a go for $30, and so far so good – the Landscape and Travel Photography course by Hudson Henry is worth the price of admission on it’s own. The photo critiques are also interesting and informative.

    One of the big reasons I subscribed to KelbyOne was the clear and concise way you delivered your courses. I was disappointed when you left and since then I feel KelbyOne have gotten too big, too impersonal and are offering more and more courses that have no relevance to me. Those griping about customer support from ON1 should try KelbyOne, my last messages to them have gone unanswered for months. If I’m going to invest in an annual subscription of $100+ for training, then I want it to be more personal, relevant and above all value for money. The initial offerings via ON1 Plus are promising, I hope it continues that way as I like what I’m seeing.

    It is clear to me that ON1 is in a transitionary state at the moment, and perhaps some small cracks are developing. While I’m still not 100% convinced I will stump up the $129 when Photo 11 arrives I’m willing to have an open mind between now and then and see what happens.

    I hope this all works out for you!

  20. Dennis Sharp

    When you were with Kelby, you made a video about making a matt for photoshop. I would like to know if that video is still out in the web world. I lost my copy of it.

  21. Jerry Gammon

    Matt – probably not the best place for this question, but I do not know how else to ask it. Watching your Landscape videos on Kelby. You said you bracket all of your shots (not for HDR), but I cannot find anywhere where you stated the intervals. (That is a great series and I changed so many of my landscape setting right away – with great results!)

  22. KactusKat

    Matt – I purchased the iPad Lightroom 4 Crash Course you did – it’s no longer available -? Any suggestions on how I can re-watch this course? Also one of the links to your name go directly to a site I’m certain you did not post – it’s redirects to something “slut” ? and the site is definitely NOT your photos.

    1. Author
      Matt K

      Hi. The App was created through KelbyOne. I don’t have any control over the content so you’d have to contact them at Kelbyone.com

  23. Rick Springfield

    Matt – They are laying off RC, Corey, Pete, Mia, and Brad. Perhaps more… But those are the folks I know. Just wanted to mention I case you haven’t heard.

    On a different note. My sis just picked up photography and asked about landscapes. My exact reply ‘you have to check out Matt K. He’s the best!’

  24. Will Pr

    Matt, your videos on Kelbyone totally inspired me and cleared up a lot of points I was confused about. Improved my photo skills. Hopefully, you will continue making tutorials. (Yours were better than most on there because you weren’t monotone and you talked in terms anyone could understand). Glad you’re happy and hope you keep making tutorials.

  25. Lynn B

    I just posted this question somewhere else on your website but maybe this is the correct place. I’m pretty sure that in last week’s Creative Live, you said we could buy presets at a discounted price. Is this so? And if it is, where do I find them on your website?

  26. Pingback: Matt’s Iceland Adventure 2016 – Matt K

  27. Chris

    Matt, we absolutely miss you at Kelby One but On1 software is an absolutely FANTASTIC product. I recently downloaded a copy of it and it does everything I need to do, much faster then I could do it in LR. The only thing it doesn’t cover is a tab to remove chromatic aberration which I am crossing my fingers will be added with the On1 Raw which is being released this fall. Otherwise I am blown away with this product. I wanted to thank you for all your work and education as it has absolutely made me a better photographer and retoucher. Best, Chris

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