You know the little lightbulb that appears above people’s heads in certain cartoons? Well, lighting, furnishings and collect ibles dealer Zëitgeist takes that idea literally in its first campaign.

The ads, which are breaking this month from McClain Finlon Advertising in Denver, tout the opening of Zëitgeist’s first store there with uncompromising portraits of “real people” under Zëitgeist’s lamps.

The portraits are all of folks agency art director Steve Whittier “found” on the street. One ad shows a goateed fellow with an earring and bandanna under a graceful Viennese lamp from the early 20th century. Another shows a bearded man with long hair under a 1990s offering. A third shows an older gent in a crew cut (actually Whittier’s father) under a 1960s Danish lamp.

There is no tagline; underneath each portrait, copy reads: “Zëitgeist. Modern design classics.”

Creative director Tom Leydon noted the lamps link to the “unpretentious” people in the ads. “The lamps make the people more interesting and vice versa,” he said.

The work is breaking in regional magazines and as posters in Denver. Copywriter Chase Claussen also worked on the effort.