It’s been a while since I gave you an update on what’s going on these days, so I figured it was time. As most of you reading this know, I joined the ON1 team back in November of 2014. It’s been an awesome time since, and I’ve probably learned more about education, training, and how people learn, that I ever would have thought. I’ve also had the chance to help shape the direction of the ON1 apps, based on the feedback that I hear when I’m out there teaching. It’s been a really fun experience, and enlightening to see the software side of things.
But, during this time I realized something about myself, I love teaching and I’m an educator at heart. So this past June, my wife Diana and I made the decision to start our own training company where I can focus on what I do best – teaching others.
People have always seen me in an educational coaching/mentoring role, so I decided to own that role and be very intentional about it. I’m starting my own educational platform here at MattK.com. I’ve really enjoyed my time as an ON1 employee, but this is something that’s been swirling in my head for quite a while. From my experience launching the ON1 Plus platform earlier this year, I’ve learned a ton about starting and running a business, and this is the right time to take the plunge.
Did You Say Your Wife Is In On This Too?
Yep, my wife Diana is a huge part of this and I couldn’t have started this without her. See, she was the manager/editor of a Photoshop Elements magazine. Because the magazine business isn’t exactly rockin’ it these days, the company made the tough choice to close that magazine. But over that time, she really sharpened a lot of great skills that make us a perfect team, so we can each do what we’re good at. Not to mention, it’s a great feeling to not worry about getting called to the HR office if I pat her butt and say “great job honey!” 😉
Plus, the timing couldn’t be better. We have two teenage boys – a 10th and an 8th grader. So, over the next 4-5 years, our household is going to get very empty. For any of you that have gone through this, you’ll know this is a really eye-opening time in a couple’s life together. You’ve spent years catering to your kids, and relationships take a back seat. But now we’re coming back together. Our kids are becoming more independent, and it’s not as cool to hang with mom and dad anymore, so we have a lot more free time together.
For us, it’s been amazing! It’s like we’re dating again in some ways. But we also realized that we wanted to do something bigger together. Every couple is different. But the two of us have realized we thrive together. I started working from home almost 2 years ago and we’ve never once found it difficult to be together all day. She does her thing in her area of the house, and I do mine in my office/studio. We come together throughout the day to have a cup of coffee, work out, eat lunch, talk shop – and then get back to work. It works out great, and I’m just so excited that I get to do this with her.
This is WAY more than just a business, or a job for us. This is a life for us to build together, and we’re SOOO thrilled about it.
Okay enough of the sappy stuff 😉 So what’s next? Well, a ton of great things.
(Update: The course mentioned below is released. Click here to find out more)
First, I’m in the process of creating the most-complete, personalized, and useful Lightroom course that I’ve ever created. You can click here for more info, and to sign up to be notified when it’s out. This course is designed to be the first and last course you have to buy on Lightroom. I won’t give too much away here, but it’s got a lot of cool stuff.
Why Lightroom? Well, I say this in a very humble way, so please don’t take it wrong. But I honestly feel I can teach you Lightroom better than anyone else out there. I’m probably among the top 2 people in the world, as far as reach, when it comes to teaching Lightroom to live audiences. I taught seminars for years, and got to interact face-to-face with thousands of Lightroom users personally each month. I also ran the top Lightroom website in the world for 8 years. All of this taught me a key skill – listening! I took note of every person’s question who came up to me, or question asked on the blog. I watched where patterns developed, and I’ve tailored my training to answer your questions before you even ask them.
Is That It?
Nope, that’s just the beginning. From there, I plan on launching similar photography and editing training courses of a very personal nature. Working with the ON1 Plus group this year has taught me the value of a personal coach/mentor. I mentioned earlier that people have seen me in that role, and now I intend on owning it and being very intentional about it.
I may not be able to sell my training products to hundreds of thousands of people out there, like some bigger websites. But I don’t need or want to. My goal is to use a model that let’s me give personal attention, coaching and mentoring to the people I teach. I’ve seen first hand how amazing this is for learning photography and post-processing. It’s incredibly rewarding (on both sides) for people to have some one to talk to. And to really see themselves getting better at a much faster pace, and truly enjoying their photography.
Don’t forget. I’m not a professional full-time photographer and I have no problem admitting it. Sure, I shoot some paid gigs here and there, but that’s not how I make (or want to make) my living. So I hold nothing back. My only job is to help make you better. I have no ego in this, and no secrets. What I know, I’ll share with you, and that’s how we’ll both succeed.
Wanna help? Great! Here’s a few ways:
- Check out my new Lightroom course and sign up for my email community to be notified when it’s out. (Click Here For More)
- Subscribe to my videos on Youtube. That way, whenever I do something new, you don’t have to search around for it.
- Check me out at ON1 Plus. I’m in there just about every day (Click Here For More)
- Follow me on Facebook and Instagram. I post photos there all the time.
What About ON1?
If you’re an ON1 fan, don’t worry at all, I’ll still be around. I primarily use Lightroom and Photoshop for my editing, but ON1 Effects is a huge part of my “style” in my photos, so that’s not going anywhere. And Browse is always open, so I can quickly look at photos when I need.
Earlier this year, I helped launch an educational component of ON1 – ON1 Plus. It’s a group near and dear to my heart, and I’ve signed on to doing 4 months as an ON1 Plus guest coach next year. Also, I’ve been a part of ON1 Raw since the beginning (the next version of ON1 apps). I think what they’re developing will be a great tool for many photographers, and I’ll be around to show how to incorporate it into workflows with Lightroom and Photoshop.
Will I Be in Portland Or Tampa?
I run in to people all the time that think I moved to Portland (where ON1 is headquartered). I didn’t. I worked remotely in Tampa, FL, and traveled there a few times a year to meet up with the ON1 team. I’m a Florida guy, my wife and kids love Florida. Unlike many, we love the heat, we love the humidity, the sun, the sand, and the beach. Crazy I know, but hey, we like it. I’ve been here for 25 years, and this is where we plan on staying for the foreseeable future.
Are You Done Yet?
Yes, I’m finally done 🙂 You’ve probably stopped reading my short novel long before this. But hopefully you see this part. I want to sincerely thank all of you for your support over the years. I’m a seriously lucky guy. I get to do what I love for a living, and I get to watch and hear how people improve from it. I can’t explain what a rewarding experience that is. The emails and kind words I get from all of the people I train has been a huge inspiration in me taking this big step, and I wouldn’t have done it without you. I can’t say it enough, but I’ll say it once more… thank you.
– Matt K
Update: I just wanted to say how much I appreciate all of the kind words from everyone. You guys seriously almost brought down my website on Wednesday when I posted this. The outpour of support here, on social media, and the hundreds of emails you sent was AMAZING! I’m trying to work my way through, and respond to all of them so stay tuned. But seriously… you guys rock!!! 🙂