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Homeless man becomes a sensation selling bags that include his art

Kevin has sold more than 200 cotton bags so far Credit: BPM Media

A homeless man has become a sensation after selling bags that include his art.

Kevin World has sold more than 200 cotton bags so far in Birmingham, which are all uniquely designed with different puns.

There is not a fixed fee charged for the artwork but he asks for a “donation from the heart” and on average people pay £3.

There isn't a fixed fee charged for the artwork but Kevin asks for a “donation from the heart” Credit: BPM Media

Kevin became homeless five years ago due to a family tragedy.

Life on the streets has not been easy for him as he suffers from depression and anxiety but he says starting to draw less than a year ago has helped him cope.

He also decided to combine the need to save on plastic bags and help the environment with his artistic skills.

“For years I've been putting on a mask and smiling but there's been a lot of tears behind that mask, now drawing is helping me interact with people.

“It passes the time away because a lot of people walk past and you do feel pretty invisible.

“Instead of giving handouts to homeless people you get something back in return, one of these bags.

“You wouldn't believe how crazy it's gotten over the last two to three weeks, it's just exploded.”

– Kevin World

His bag selling business is called The Bag Issue, a pun on The Big Issue magazine which is also sold by street vendors.

The designs on the bags include gags like give peas a chance with a design of them picketing.

His bag selling business is called The Bag Issue, a pun on The Big Issue magazine Credit: BPM Media

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The bags have done so well that people have told Kevin they are being resold on the internet for between £60-£80 which he says makes him feel proud but a little cheated.

Homeless charity, The Red Bag Co is trying to get Kevin his own stall to sell his work at the German Market which starts on November 7.

He normally sells them on the corner of Navigation Street, Birmingham.

He normally sells the bags on the corner of Navigation Street, Birmingham. Credit: BPM Media

Kevin said he was accepted on to the Housing First list in February but is still waiting to see a property.

“I shouldn't be sitting out there on the street I should have been in my own place months ago. People that I've gotten to know on the street don't talk to me now because they think that I've been telling a pack of lies.”

– Kevin World

IT consultant Greg Wright, 57, supplies Kevin with the cotton bags and had the idea of using his artistic ability to make a difference a month ago.

“Kev's always had this entrepreneurial spirit, he is unique.

"You can see the spirit of the guy, he's a go-to person around here for people living on the streets, he cares about people.”

– Greg Wright

His bags are available are also on bagissue.org.