Lightroom (and other) Book News Update

Hi everyone. I just wanted to give a quick update on a Lightroom book that I’ve had a number of people ask me about over the last 6 months and a few other things.

1. The Layers book is still tearing up the charts and it’s been hanging in the top 500 of ALL books on Amazon (wow!). Jason D Moore has written a pretty thorough review of the book over on his site. FYI… Jason’s got a great site overall so make sure you spend some time poking around.

2. I’ve got a Photoshop Elements book at the printer right now called “The Photoshop Elements 6 Book for Digital Photographers”. Scott Kelby wrote the original version of this book and he brought me in to co-author this latest update with him. As you can imagine it was a huge honor and I told him I’d only do it if my name gets to go first on the cover (totally just kidding!). It’ll be out in the next couple of weeks and you can find/pre-order it on Amazon here.

3. The next Photoshop book I’m planning on working on is a project that started about 2 years ago called “Photoshop 101 – Your first course in Photoshop”. I think the title says it all. It got held off for other projects but it’s back and should be out later this year.

4. The Lightroom Killer Tips book. If you look on you’ll see that I’m listed to write this book for this June. I’ve gotten a ton of questions about it over the last 6 months so I figure I’ll set the record straight. As of now, I’m not going to write this book. The reason why is that I just don’t think the tips are deep enough in Lightroom to warrant an entire book. See, when I write a book my job is to a) pick a topic that will get you to part with 30-some-odd dollars of your money and, b) make you feel good about it in the end. I just don’t think this is the book that’ll do that yet. Lightroom is fairly discoverable and I’d much rather continue bringing the tips, videos, and news that I bring to you on this website instead of entrenching myself in another book. Then, hopefully, by the time I do write a Lightroom book you’ll be a loyal fan and decide to purchase that book. Sound good?

Your Comments
That said, I’d like to open up the comments here for ideas on another Lightroom book. The main reason I haven’t written one yet is because there are already good books on the market. Scott Kelby’s book is the bible for Lightroom in my mind, so why try to write another “me too” Lightroom book. He covers Sorting, Developing, going between Lightroom and Photoshop, and even the entire workflow from shoot to finish. That being said, if there’s something about Lightroom, Photoshop, or digital photography that you don’t feel is being covered (or covered well) out there then let me know by posting a comment.

Thanks for all of your help and make sure you read on to the next post for this week’s preset.



  1. Tom Garrett 23 January, 2009 at 17:27 Reply

    I purchased “Layers” the other day not realizing it was really a companion
    book for Lightroom. I am using Elements 6 and have you and Scott Kelbys
    Elements 6 book. I have not completely understood layers and what I could do with them and browsing thru “Layers” I figured it might be the best way to do that. I’m struggling to locate some of the tools etc. and
    wondered if you have any suggestions on how to make your directions work easier in Elements 6? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks

  2. Georgette Grossman 16 March, 2008 at 22:03 Reply

    I loved the videos about organizing photos in LR by importing them from a current location on the disk or moving them to a new location within LR (your PHOTOS subfolder). When traveling and saving the photos on my laptop I could never get the LR Export feature to put the photos on my home desktop exactly where I wanted them. So I moved them to the folder I wanted on my home desktop PC and then imported them. But how do I retain any Keywording that I applied to the laptop photos. If I “Save Metadata to a File” (make an .xmp file) and move both, then import will the keywords be saved? Thanks!

  3. Shawn 12 March, 2008 at 21:01 Reply

    OK, I know I’m a little late here in commenting but I just got the e-mail today that Amazon cancelled my Lightroom Killer Tips Book order so I had to see what was up.

    I’d like to see more on the subject of organizing my photos and backing them up to disc. I’ve read countless times that I should burn a cd as soon as I download my photos, but no real system that works for me. What file format should I use, why burn a backup cd before you’ve made any adjustments or should you burn one after too? I’m just not comfortable with what I’m doing now or with how to effectively move photos out of Lightroom. Write a book, please!

  4. Tammy 10 March, 2008 at 22:21 Reply

    Hey Matt,

    I know that the Layers book was written for the full version of Photoshop, but would Elements users benefit from it also? Hopefully soon I will update to CS3, but for now I have PSE 5. Thanks!

  5. Oscar 10 March, 2008 at 14:40 Reply

    I had a question about keywording. I discovered that if you have synonyms and child words (or parents) what gets exported and what gets passed on to photoshop is not the same. This is really frustrating because if a create a word hierachy and I attach it to an image and then decide to edit the image in photoshop the keywords that are passed across to photoshop are not what I had designed, while if I export it I do retain the keywords. The work around I have is that I edit the file in photoshop and then export the PS edited file from LR. Are you aware of this issue or is there some other workaround?


  6. Dan Gerges 10 March, 2008 at 12:53 Reply

    Matt, Layers is just a great book! I have most of the Kelby books and yours is up there with the best (Sorry Scott). By the way, I took my copy to a local copy shop and had them install a spiral binder and clear plastic front and back. Now I can lay the book flat for reference. I do this with all my PS books. Well worth the $3-5 investment. Thanks again! Dan

  7. Allen 7 March, 2008 at 15:17 Reply

    As a retired professor I admire your technique. Your instructions – like your photos – are engaging, perfectly focused, and uncluttered.

    A question regarding your new Layers book: is it applicable to PS Elements as well as CS2/CS3?


  8. Perry 6 March, 2008 at 10:52 Reply


    Thanks for everything you do. I love the tips. I am a Lightroom user but don’t have the funds for PS. Can you tell me where I can find the differences between Elements and PS since you just wrote the book with Scott.

    Your help and wisdom is appreciated.


  9. Dennis Zito 5 March, 2008 at 09:56 Reply

    Hey Matt,

    Got my autographed Layers book! Thanks for signing it! Just wanted to let you know that it’s easy reading and following the steps is easy. Love the tips you throw in every once in a while. Learned more in the Chapter one than I have in the last year about layers.

    Thanks for all you do for us!


  10. Thom Dombrowski 5 March, 2008 at 09:36 Reply


    I think you said it best, that Scott has already done the lightroom book. I think for me anyways in a Lightroom sense, just keep up the great work that you do on this Blog..The more preset you do the better off we all are.. The only thing that I think is needed is more fun printing presets, along with the processing preset..


  11. Roni 5 March, 2008 at 08:56 Reply

    Hi Matt,

    One thing that I could not find a definit answer is how to manage the workflow in LR in regards with Raw and JPG. usually the workflow seems to end with the image printed/ emailed/ uploaded. where I fail is to understand how to manage the liberary with Raw and JPG (including archiving, deleting raw images no longer required, etc)


  12. Mark 5 March, 2008 at 07:30 Reply

    Hi Matt
    I got question from different subject.
    In last PSTV Corey show a cool sketch pen brush.
    Could you show tutorial how do one.



  13. Nick Tsakiris 4 March, 2008 at 23:49 Reply

    OK, guys I am attempting to release to you for a limited time my selection of presets that were created from scratch. I did not use the LR ones and then modified. I treated each uniquely. Give me feedback that is the only way we learn is by feedback. We cannot move further if no one is honest. Anyway, I was only going to release 2 and then I thought this is the place to get these presets famous so have at them.

    They are only going to be up for a limited time on my servers then I will move to a bundle that will have 30 presets for 49.95. See I kept it under $50.

    Anyway enjoy!!!!!!!!

    PS. I want to be on Photoshop TV. That was my lame attempt to get know with the big guys!

  14. Richard Whetton 4 March, 2008 at 23:36 Reply


    I read the web site daily and if you did bring a book out, then even if it were only what has already been covered off here I would gladly part with $30 as a thank you. For the same reason I have 4 of Scott’s books and one of Dave Cross’ and I am currently reading the moment it clicks (great read by the way). My next purchase will be The Layers Book, it’s not just that they are great value (and so far they are) but I think we who enjoy reading your blogs need to provide some support to keep you all at it! Incidently, given the amount I have spent on gear a little spent on improving skills is pretty insignificant!

    All the best,


  15. mattk 4 March, 2008 at 22:31 Reply

    All – thanks for the kind words about the Layers book.

    Daniel – Thanks for the book ideas. I’ve actually been tossing around the Photoshop for Designers book and I may explore some things there. I wouldn’t hold your breath on the CS3 D&D book though. As for Illustrator, I’ve kind of stepped out of that area. I realized I can’t be all things to all people so I had to pick Illustrator or Lightroom. I chose Lightroom. I’ll pass your thoughts on to Corey though.

    Rod – it’s a good idea but the whole Lightroom/Photoshop thing is more of an article then it is a full 300 page book. There’s just not that much to it. I suppose there’s room to show people what should be done in LR and what should be done in PS, but again, I think I could do that in a 3-4 page article instead of a whole book. FYI… the action they use to watermark the photos in the downloads section of the Layers book accidentally resized them. Make sure you go back and re-download the full size images.

    Nick – just submit a link to them here. We’ll check them out and I can even post a link to them on the blog.

    Wayne – Many thanks. Actually it was last week but it’s all good. I appreciate the thought.

    Harold – Great ideas. I’m not sure I can make it into a book but maybe some videos and tips here on the website could help. Make sure you stop by and say Hi in Orlando.

    Frank – Thanks. same thing though. I’m not sure I can devote a whole book to this but I’ll try my best to cover them here – for free 🙂

    Kent – Actually, LR 1.1 was the last major update. 1.2 and 1.3 were small bug fixes. So a LR 1.1 book is essentially the real deal and 99.9 percent of it will work fine.

    Thanks again everyone for all of your comments.

    Matt K

  16. Kent Daiber 4 March, 2008 at 19:30 Reply

    I have refrained from purchasing ANY currently available LR books because they all appear to have been written at the time of 1.1, and I gather that the changes since 1.1 have been considerable (I switched from Aperture into 1.3 so I don’t know the whole LR evolution). So I believe that an update to address 1.3 is already called for unless, as Glyn suggests, it, too, would be outdated very quickly. But whenever you do deem it timely to write the book, I think Rod and Harold’s suggestions above as to content are excellent.

  17. Frank Damon 4 March, 2008 at 19:15 Reply

    Hi Matt:

    I love this website; it is part of my daily tabs in Safari.
    I would like to see something from you about the printer settings in Lightroom. I have had bad experiences with it, most likely due to my lack of knowledge of it. Also, I think some kind of explanation of the Catalogue function of Lightroom would be helpful, too. I know it has been rehashed to death, but I still find it illusive.

    Many thanks, Frank

  18. Harold Blouin 4 March, 2008 at 18:29 Reply

    Lightroom book I like to see besides developing and printing, is more on importing, backing up and especially cataloguing, exporting and how it is done in a simple and yet thorough way.
    Thanks Matt I’ve really enjoyed your Killer tips and looking forward to meeting you at PS World in Orlando.

  19. Nick Tsakiris 4 March, 2008 at 16:59 Reply

    I would like to know how could submit presets. I have created 30 that I will be releasing for purchase but I would like ot submit one or two of my favs for everyone to use and get feedback. Please tell me how or if this is possible.


  20. Glyn Dewis 4 March, 2008 at 16:28 Reply

    Hi Matt,

    I totally agree with you that now is not the time for a new book on Lightroom. In the coming months I’ve no doubt that the guys at Adobe are gonna spring some surprises on us with updates and new versions so I guess then would be a good time.

    I think by you making the decision to not write a book just yet is a very honourable statement … this will be read by many, and it’s those people that will realise as we do, that you have your readers interests at heart and are not gonna write the book for the sake of it…good on you mate!!!!!

    This way, when you do produce another book it will be as valuable as your latest “Layers” book which I’ve no doubt is gonna make the mystery of Photoshop so much clearer for many people out there!!!

    Best wishes to you and yours,

  21. Rod 4 March, 2008 at 14:15 Reply

    The book I think you should write is The Lightroom-Photoshop Workflow (or something like that). It seems that more and more people are combining the two programs, but sometimes get lost at the point of integration. Is LR enough for some photos or can they be improved in PS? How? Bring out the strengths of each program in the context of a simple workflow that people can follow. Include a lot of examples that clearly show the advantages of using the two programs in combination, or when one is enough on its own. Throw in few of your LR killer tips. Write the book as a tutorial – just like Layers. (The reason I bought Layers, Matt, is because I liked your teaching style from some online tutorials I saw. Your book reads just like that.) This is the future of digital photography how-to books. You, Scott and a few others have figured that out. Most others have not. Each chapter is a lesson with downloadable files – and in your next book please provide the REAL files like Scott did in the 7 Point System, not like the too small photos with iStockPhoto stamped on them that were used in Layers. People learn best by doing. Make it hands-on, make it real. You’re already doing that and it makes it much easier to absorb the material and enjoy the process. Keep up the good work!

  22. Daniel 4 March, 2008 at 14:01 Reply

    Rocking the Houseski,

    The way there is Scott Kelby’s book Photoshop For Digital Photographers, I would like to see a general Photoshop book in the same style possibly called Photoshop for Digital Designers or whatever name, you get my point. It should be written by you and Scott Kelby together. It will cover the entire other side of the fence on Photoshop and be a great book. I would also like to see Corey Barker write a vol2 of the The Photoshop Classic Effects book (I know he didn’t do the part 1). When is Scott Kelby going to release his CS3 version of the Down & Dirty Tricks book? I would like there to be an Illustrator Killer Tips podcast by you or Corey Barker. Looking forward to seeing these things soon.


  23. Chris McNeil 4 March, 2008 at 12:53 Reply


    I ordered your book from Chapters here in Canada (sorry it doesn’t count towards your numbers on amazon..)

    I have to say this is a great book just what I was looking for.. I’m a newbie to photoshop and have been reading Scott’s book for digital photographers which was great for getting my photo’s tweaked to print but I was still craving more details on how to use photoshop better and not just for photo retouching.. The layers book seems to fit exactly what i was looking for and I am having a blast working through the chapters and trying out the examples with your pictures..

    Thanks for the great book.. I look forward to future ones (don’t know if photoshop 101 will be too basic after these reads but I’ll check it out).


  24. Marcy 4 March, 2008 at 12:46 Reply


    I received my signed copy of your Layers book in the mail this past weekend and I just want to say thanks for such a great book. It is exactly what I was looking for and I’m taking my time going through each chapter. I really like the “How Do I” pages at the end of each chapter. Very well done.


  25. Ken L 4 March, 2008 at 12:33 Reply

    Hey Matt,

    Nice to see you book selling…..great job

    You may have covered this, but I cannot figure something out.

    I created a color scheme that I want to create a preset. I know I can sync one photo to make the rest just like that, but I cannot figure out how to make a preset for a “coloring technique” i like.

    Can you help with this??

    Ken in Kentucky

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