Ghost sign hunters snap fading ads on Melbourne’s walls

Hobbyists are taking photos of aging advertising signs in a form of 'commercial archaeology'.

You've seen them. Peeling and faded hand painted billboards advertising a product that might not even exist anymore.

They're known as 'ghost signs' and there's a worldwide movement of amateur and professional photographers who are dedicated to catching these bites of urban history.

"It's a form of commercial archaeology," says Dr Stefan Schutt from the Centre for Cultural Diversity and Wellbeing at Victoria University.

"They also point to a kind of a yearning for some kind of continuity, for some sense of things staying the same because in cities things change all the time," he says.

"There's an element of nostalgia involved."

Dr Stefan Schutt talks to Red Symons about what constitutes a ghost sign as well as naming some of his favourite ghost signs in Melbourne and where to find them.

Do you have a ghost sign photo? Share it with us on Facebook, twitter or upload it to our website.

Source: ABC 774