Homeless People Advertising - Bumvertising™ Gallery

Gabriel "Free" joins the Seattle Bumvertising team, sharing the exceedingly popular Mercer St. onramp to I-5 with Ken. Gabriel has used begging as a transitional income for the last three years. He travelled here by bus from Montana most recently, where he worked as a farm hand. He is grateful for additional Bumvertising revenue, while he looks for his next job, “hopefully as a fisherman”.

Gabriel's troubles in life began very early. He was switched at birth by a hospital doctor, and has never met his real parents. When asked what he would like to be doing in 10 years, Gabriel replied, "I want to have a boat. I would catch my own food and trade and be free from all the bullshit in this world."
Andrew flies Bumvertising's Strategic Domination sign with pride. Having been in the sign holding business for only 3 months, Andrew finds the streets tolerable, but isn't looking forward to the coming Seattle cold and rain. Andrew was a roofing laborer up until 3 months ago, when the economy started heading south. He says, "The bids weren't working out anymore, so I'm doing this for a while."

Andrew negotiates hard for his Bumvertsing revenue, but appreciates the opportunity to add value to society. Andrew drinks a lot of water, and enjoys Snickers bars.
Bumvertising™ accepts David as the most recent advertising contractor to promote the increasingly popular game site, StrategicDomination.com. Navy Dave, or Leprechaun as he is known on the street, holds down an entire region of strong corners in the Northgate area of Seattle. David has stated that he works hard to defend his lucrative territory.

While at work, David enjoys listening to classic rock music, claiming that AAA batteries for his portable cassette player are his most significant expense.

David earned his nickname, Navy Dave, by serving as a cook in the navy during the Persian Gulf War. David stars in Bumvertising Episode #3, The Sign Business is a Fine Business.
We are pleased to add Craig to our list of ambitious advertising vagrants. Like much of Seattle's population, Craig has migrated to Seatte from California. In addition to his knack for always finding the most highly trafficked corners, Craig believes strongly that his artistic abilities and penchant for sign making contribute heavily to his consistent bumming revenues. Citing good color contrast and large sign size as important factors, Craig can go on and on about the elements of a good bum sign. Craig told us that he was not sure whether his clouds should be grey or charcoal colored though. Craig is saving up $12 to have his best sign laminated to hedge against the disappointment of a strong Seattle downpour. Craig welcomes his new found Bumvertising income stream, coming to the Bumvertising agency with 5 years begging experience.
Ken comes to Seattle from the Midwest, having travelled by bus from his home state of Minnesota. Ken is excited to become a Bumvertising contractor, and looks forward to having enough stable income to have a place of his own someday. Ken is an ethical sign holder, as he only puts down true statements on his begging signs. An experienced sign holder, having already learned that used white plastic sign board works best for visibily, Ken was impressed that Bumvertising's signs are fully laminated and light weight. Ken was chosen because of his outstanding sign making abilities and his ambition to hold a popular corner on the Mercer Street on-ramp to I-5.
UPDATE: Jeff, a key player in our 2005 Bumvertising Campaign, is back in action to promote Bumvertising's newest advertiser, Strategic Domination™. Jeff has only good news to report -- his broken rib has healed up, leaving only a slight pain when coughing as a distant reminder. Jeff remains a football fanatic, hoping that the Huskys and Seahawks will play some better football this season. Parked on the same corner, Jeff has now enlisted the sign making abilities of a talented friend, claiming that a good sign is key to a good donation income.

Before getting into begging, Jeff ran his own landscape contracting business, running a crew that made sun decks, patios, and other backyard installations. Jeff was also a worker on the old Kingdome roof renovation project, although he was injured on the job and two of his coworkers were killed in a crane accident.
Teresa has recently joined Bumvertising™, assisting with the Strategic Domination campaign, spending most of her time at the highly competitive 45th off ramp in Seattle. This four lane street gives her great visibility and driver side access.

Teresa has been begging on and off for 5 years, after she realized that she could pay for her basic food and gas expenses merely from the generosity of strangers. She uses her Bumvertising™ revenue as additional income, and the snacks she receives help keep her spirits up despite pouring rain.

Teresa tells an entrepreneurial tale of selling one of her own begging signs for $10 to a total stranger walking by one day, but laments that she was then without a sign.
UPDATE: Robert was first contracted by Bumvertising™ back in 2005 in support of our first advertiser. Three years later, in 2008, he remains loyal to the cause, promoting Strategic Domination with a similar work ethic. Robert and Terry are no longer partners, but they still share a conversation a couple times per month.

Robert remains as professional as ever, constantly looking at his watch, as not to break the 30 minute rule. Despite his busy schedule, Robert will always make time for a Snickers bar and a good chat about his business.
Pam joins the 2008 Strategic Domination Bumvertising™ campaign from Seattle, primarily working the I-5 off ramp at 6th and Seneca. This competitive position lends Pam two lane coverage, a long red traffic light, and driver side exposure.

Pam began supplementing her income with begging 8 years ago, after she had the courage to leave an abusive husband. Although she suffers from some painful and depressing diseases like reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome, and post traumatic stress disorder, Pam still enjoys some of the finer things in life, such as reading fantasy novels and quilting. "I read fantasy novels to escape my wretched life. It works," says Pam.

A veteran in her trade as a sign holder, Pam recognizes Seattle as a good place for donations, citing its "resources" as a main reason. "Signers from all over the country come here and compete. There's good resources here."

Pam advertises for StrategicDomination.com, offering the bottom part of her large sign to send traffic to the popular free game site.
Diane, although too bashful to pose for a face shot, offers her services to the 2008 Strategic Domination Bumvertising™ campaign with enthusiasm. Diane doesn't hold down a stable location, but instead travels between Seattle suburbs, meeting different traffic rushes.

Diane expresses great interest in the advertising potential of sign holders, asking a myriad of questions and offering numerous suggestions about good Bumvertising™ traffic corners. Diane also had many questions about Strategic Domination™ so that she will be able to answer onlooker questions with accuracy. Before her computer broke, Diane was an avid Freecell player, a casual game bundled with most operating systems.

Diane turned to bumming two years ago, after incurring some financial troubles following the death of her mother. She currently lives in an apartment with a friend, spending her leisure time reading books.
Terry usually pan handles to the right-turning traffic on the 45th St off-ramp in Seattle, while his two sons enjoy the summer at their grandparents' house. Terry is good friends with Robert. They share business tips back and forth, and also talk to each other about their lives. Terry is excited to finally have two months of his children's custody per year. He claims that staying sober, and remaining calm and collected is the key to his recent success.
Robert, the hardest working of our advertising campaign, shares the 45th street off-ramp, but prefers to market toward the left turning traffic. Robert doesn't believe in drinking on the job. Robert works from dawn to dusk for himself, but always appreciates the additional income from advertising contracts.
Jeff works part-time on several of the different I-5 off ramps. He is older and does not mind taking less trafficked areas. Due to a broken rib, Jeff prefers to sit on a crate while he holds his signs. Jeff often tells stories of the good old days. High school football and photography have always been points of excitement for Jeff. He has a positive attitude on life, and in Robert's words is "a good guy."


Daniel "Spotted Calf" is here from South Dakota with the rest of his Native American family. He works the 50th street on-ramp with his aunt. Unfortunately, his contract with Bumvertising™ will not be renewed. Fifteen minutes after his first contract was put into place, he had already begun to neglect his Bumvertising duties. Most importantly though, he was not enthusiastic about his position, and did not appreciate the compensation he would receive. He reminds us that a Bumvertising representative must be enthusiastic, willing, and appreciative.


Glen the angry bum, although in consideration for the position, takes no pride in sign building or maintenance, and therefore has not yet been offered a contract.

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