For the last eight years, Mat Marrash has made it his goal to eat, sleep and breathe photography. From his beginnings in digital photography to his retreat to the black-and-white darkroom, Mat surrounds himself in every bit of photography possible.

For the last eight years, Mat Marrash has made it his goal to eat, sleep and breathe photography. From his beginnings in digital photography to his retreat to the black-and-white darkroom, Mat surrounds himself in every bit of photography possible. By day, you can find him maintaining the darkroom at Midwest Photo and selling the latest and greatest camera gear. By night, he's instructing photo students and practicing photographic techniques that are over a 150 years old.

Here are some of Mat's favorite things at the moment:

Hocking Hills

Located only an hour away from Columbus, Hocking Hills is an amazing area to hike, photograph and just take in the beauty of nature. The unique rock faces, natural trails, winding streams and stunning trees make for a fantastic experience year-round. Though I've been coming to this trail for three-plus years, there's always something new and exciting to check out on each trip.

Fujifilm Instax Mini

There's nothing like seeing a photograph come to life in your hands moments after it was taken. Fuji Instax films are everything you love about Polaroid in a fun, shareable package. There's even a printer that wirelessly hooks up to your smartphone, making it the life of any party!

The Learning Studio

The best place for photography enthusiasts in Columbus to sharpen their skills. Take a one-and-done class about your camera or enroll in a series of weekly classes dedicated to your photo-editing software. B&W darkroom classes, field study workshops, local meetup group and one-on-one tutoring are also available at mpex.com/learn.

Ohio Nature Preserves

Our state is home to over 100 unique nature preserves. There are a surprising number of them located a short drive from the Columbus area. Check out which one is closest to you at naturepreserves.ohiodnr.gov/findapreserve.

400 West Rich

An artist collective that is the beating heart of working artists in Columbus. Located in Franklinton, 400 West Rich hosts monthly gallery shows, workshops, craft vendors and more. Set aside some time to check out what's going on the second Friday of every month during Franklinton Friday.