Speaking about renaissance art and not mentioning Leonardo da Vinci is a sin as he was a real genius who lived from 1452 until 1519. When you think Renaissance his name comes up instinctively. The earlier years of da Vinci are not well documented aside from the fact that he was born out of wedlock in the Vinci on 15 April 1452.
His schooling include informal education in Latin, geometry and mathematics and only when he was fourteen his formal art training started with Andrea di Cione who also trained other greats like Sandro Botticelli, Lorenzo di Credi and Perugino. He was taught mechanics, leather works, metal works, chemistry, carpentry, plaster casting, but his love for painting and sculpting shone through.
During his opportunity to work with the master Verrocchio when he did the Baptism of Christ he proved his skills and passion for working with oil. At age twenty he enter the Guild of St. Luke and continued his passion. He started living of his paintings from 1482 until 1499 and it was during this time when he received his first two huge commissions that made him famous. It was The Last Supper and The Virgin of the Rocks.
During 1513 and 1516 he spent three years in Rome and at the same time were present Raphael and Michelangelo all three of whom were guided by Pope LEO X. the painting for which Leonardo is best known for is The Mona Lisa and it is the elusive smile as well as the wholesome mysteriousness of the woman that captured individuals worldwide until today.
Aside from painting his sketches are world famous and renowned too and it is unmistakable that he made a huge impact not only on Renaissance art but art as a whole. A withdrawn and quiet man that avoided glory and glamour while he knew the value of his extraordinary abilities.