Growing up, Lucas Beaufort was surrounded by his mother’s paintings, so it was surprising he only chose to pick up a paintbrush aged 26. He “suddenly felt the need to create, to free my mind. Since that day, not one second goes by without me drawing and cultivating my imagination.” After raiding his vast collection of skate mags he began breathing life into their old covers in his own infectious style. Lucas’ fun-loving monsters all inhabit the same surreal world where nobody takes anything too seriously. Huck had to learn more about the Recover Project and the weird world of Lucas’ imagination.
You got into painting quite late. What suddenly made you decide to pick up a paintbrush and start working?
“Throughout my life I have always tried to learn something new. Skateboarding was the first thing, just after learning to walk. Then I did so many things, like playing guitar, running 10 km during 100 days, building huts, raising animals, selling ads, serving soup in restaurants and finally painting. I’m 32 years old and I feel like a kid.”
Is it true that all the magazines you paint on are from your own personal collection?
“I do have a big collection, but as soon as I started this project I contacted a whole load of different skateboard and snowboard magazines from all over the world: USA, France, Spain, UK, Australia, Portugal, New Zealand, Canada, Russia, South Africa. I receive 30 different magazines every month.”
Could you tell me a little more about the world your characters live in?
“It’s getting crazy man! Initially, it was agreed that the monsters have the right to escape from my head at night only, but it’s different now. They negotiate the right to leave when they want, so you can imagine the mess at home. I feel great with them, they grumble a little when I spend too much time with my wife but the cohabitation goes well.”
I recognise a cover from an old issue of Huck…
“You mean, the cover with Thomas Campbell? Well, first of all I really love this picture. I felt something when I got that mag in my hands. I don’t need a lot of time to understand where to go with my painting. Either I feel it or I don’t, it’s simple. I can close my eyes and the lines appear.”
How does your reinterpretation of magazine covers give them a new life?
“I always loved print. Painting on a cover is like giving it a chance to reappear, but differently, with small little monsters and their need to spread love around the world. If I paint on it, it’s because I need to do it. It’s hard to resist.”