Bulger attended Fordham University in the Bronx, where he boxed in several New York Golden Glove tournaments. Photographs of his fighting launched him onto the cover of Vogue and then modelling for brands such as Armani, Calvin Klein, Dolce & Gabbana, Kenneth Cole, and Hermès.
After a 2-year bout with cancer, Bulger dedicated himself to writing and directing and has since published cover stories and feature articles for Rolling Stone, New York, and GQ. He has directed music videos and commercials for bands such as the Hold Steady, Nightmare of You, Permanent Me, and Playradioplay; and brands such as Pepsi and Disney.
For Bulger's article "The Devil and Ginger Baker" in Rolling Stone, Bulger lived with the rock drummer Ginger Baker in South Africa where Baker had spent the previous decade living in seclusion. The article and the numerous hours of interviews Bulger captured on film became the premise for his documentary Beware of Mr. Baker, and in the spring of 2010, Bulger returned to South Africa with a small film crew to finish making the film. Beware of Mr. Baker premiered at the 2012 South by Southwest Film Festival and won the Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary.
- Coronado, Kris (3 March 2012). "Washington native Jay Bulger’s first documentary film, about drummer Ginger Baker, will premiere at South by Southwest Film Festival". The Washington Post. Retrieved 26 March 2012.
- Bulger, Jay. "Are You Ready for Paz?". New York Magazine. Retrieved 26 March 2012.
- Bulger, Jay. "Prince of the Professional Nobodies". New York Magazine. Retrieved 26 March 2012.
- "Rihanna - GQ Obsession of the Year 2012". Gq.com. 2014-01-04. Retrieved 2014-07-18.
- Blog, Vman. "Rising Above". VMAN. Archived from the original on 29 August 2011. Retrieved 26 March 2012.
- Stone, Rolling. "The Devil and Ginger Baker: Behind Our New Feature". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 26 March 2012.
- Murphy, Mekado (14 March 2012). "‘Beware of Mr. Baker’ and ‘Gimme the Loot’ Win Grand Jury Prizes at SXSW". New York Times. Retrieved 26 March 2012.