Wielding his spray can like a weapon, French street artist Scaf slices across city walls and transforms them into something magical with his trompe l’oeil graffiti. His creatures, which range from ferocious dinosaurs to snakes and skeletons, seem to emerge from two-dimensional surfaces to take over their environment. The work is made that much better by the whimsical photographs that Scaf takes of each piece.
He isn’t a mere vandal: “I love to paint in all of these abandoned places. Above all, I like abandoned houses, manors, castles, and factories.” By doing so, he transforms them and adds extra value to them, rather than the opposite.
In order to highlight his graffiti in the best way possible, Scaf actually interacts with his art. Whether it’s dressing as a caveman to sit next to a dinosaur skeleton or feeding a rat a giant piece of cheese, his presence in the images is a spectacular finishing touch. His sense of humor is deeply connected with his art, as he hopes that through his work people will get in touch with their inner child and be transported to a different world.
On a technical level, Scaf’s work is precise. His understanding of angles and perspective allows him to create 3D illusions from flat surfaces with ease. Always pushing himself to new levels, Scaf is constantly thinking of new subjects and scenarios to paint in order to delight the viewer.
His success as an artist has also led him to start his own company, Grafo Deco, where he offers his services to private clients and businesses.
It makes one wonder where he acquired sick skills like that. One would assume that he went to art school, or something similar. It turns out his background is “the school of the street,” as he jokingly said in his exclusive interview for Bored Panda. “I did not study art. I started 18 years ago in abandoned factories and the street. It was a school friend who transmitted this passion to me.”
But wait, there’s more depth to it than that. Literally. His other signature skill is his ability to draw from a perspective to create an in-depth optical illusion where the object seemingly pops out of the wall. I, for one, would die of a heart attack if I saw a dinosaur of his in an abandoned building. His 3D drawings are so lifelike, it makes one forget that dinosaurs went extinct millions of years ago.
The artist even kicks it up an extra notch by striking often-hilarious poses that complement and play along with his drawings, making it real Instalicious eye-candy. It enhances the whole experience even more: it’s one thing to take a picture of your work, and another to have fun while doing it. He even dresses up accordingly for them.
Apart from his insane skills, this too must be the reason why his 120k followers on Instagram aren’t just an optical illusion. If you like them, check out his other works on his social media pages above. And if you go for a walk along the streets, make sure you appreciate all of the good works of art that are out there for everyone to see for free.
The artist has also opened up about what his quarantine experience was like: “Quarantine hasn’t changed my daily life much when I’m in my little town in France. Apart from the many staggered trips, I continued to paint alone in my abandoned factories. And if not I worked some painting on canvas, and I drew a lot. I am in my artistic bubble every day.”