Even in today’s world of surround sound mega TVs blasting out Sky Sports in ‘glorious HD’, most football fans still fall properly in love with the game the moment they first visit their home stadium.
It’s the stuff of football cliché, but it’s no less true. The first view of whichever footballing cathedral has been bequeathed to you by birth right, as you stomp towards it in a wave of your favourite colour, the clarion call of the programme sellers mingling with the smell of sausage fat in the air, is a special moment in any young fan’s life.
It’s something of that vivid magic artist Jamie B Edwards manages to evoke with his latest project: an attempt to paint Britain's football grounds one by one (so far: 50 and counting) using bold colours, strong outlines and abstract shapes.
“Initially I investigate the ground's environment by looking at satellite maps and try to work out the best aspects and most interesting features,” he explains.
“I then go and visit the area, sketch, take lots of photos and normally end with a visit to the local chip shop.”
Like any other visit to the football then.
An Arsenal fan for 30 years, Edwards admits Highbury is close his heart, but that drawing Prenton Park [home of Tranmere Rovers] "from someone's vegetable patch" has been a highlight of the project so far.
"The response from fans has been overwhelmingly positive," he says.
“But as an artist, you are not doing your job if you please everyone. It is important you stick to your guns. I feel that much of the mass produced imagery, so often offered up to fans tends to be forced, unimaginative and pretty unattractive. To me that seems to underestimate the viewer.
"Fans already know their clubs; I think they appreciate a more subtle approach.”
See more of Jamie's art at his website, urbancolours.