Doing a slightly different version of this post today, as I want to share more information on my friend’s artwork that allowed me to go up to Minneapolis for the MLB All-Star Game… moments I’ll treasure for the rest of my life! He’s a Blue Jays fan, in case you’re wondering! Anyways….
This past weekend I was lucky enough to attend the MLB All-Star Game and festivities surrounding it, aka FanFest. When this season started out, Target Field and this game weren’t on my list, but I found myself in Minneapolis thanks to a friend I met through blogging- S. Preston. You might remember him from a couple of my posts this past off-season, or seen his Minimalist Ballpark Art on Deadspin (slightly more popular blog ;)).
Though Preston has been creating minimalist ballpark prints since last September, he was contacted by MLB about a month ago and granted licensing for his artwork (lawyer fun times I was told). In a whirlwind of events, he and his partner Ian found themselves working their first trade show and the artwork was a hit (more like a grand slam if you like double baseball puns)! It was exciting to be a small part of Preston’s success, as fans came to the booth to purchase prints and meet the artist behind them.
What makes his work so unique, is that they’re not your typical ballpark pictures that you’re forced to keep tucked away in your man cave, they’re living room worthy art pieces. As we told fans all weekend, these are wife approved, even if she’s not a sports fan! Since Preston focuses each print on the most popular feature of a particular ballpark, it clicks immediately with that fan base and is a conversation starter to identify which baseball stadium is which among friends.
We had large groups of people throughout FanFest standing around the large all ballparks print just outside the booth quizzing each other and then getting nostalgic over the Heritage Collection which featured old ballparks like Forbes Field, Shea Stadium, and Ebbets Field. I like to call them oldies but goodies and told Preston he needs to get a move on and make Cleveland Municipal! My small request will have to take a number as there were quite a few ideas thrown at him and Preston’s already working on the NFL and NCAA for this fall (Ohio Stadium!!).
I’m one of those people who loves to feed off other people’s happiness and it was a delight to work alongside Preston and Ian and witness the beginning of their success. On a whim (he started making the designs just for fun), he has created artwork that not only looks great but connects with people on a deeper level. It taps into that pride and loyalty you feel as a fan of a team, while allowing you to share your love in a slightly more sophisticated way.
It’s hard to pick just one print as your favorite, but I highly suggest starting your collection and purchasing each park as you check it off your list. I recommend buying the medium size, as it does the prints the most justice if you’re just buying your favorite ballparks and getting the small framed prints if you’re collecting them all to display across a large wall or around a room.
For more information on the prints check out Preston’s website and like him on Facebook for updates on new parks and stadiums. Also if you do purchase a print, share a picture of it hung up in your home/office with him on Twitter!
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