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!