Leonardo da Vinci
(1452 - 1519)
At the age of fifteen Leonardo da Vinci began a ten-year apprenticeship with Andrea del Verrocchio, during which time he was accepted into the Florentine painters’ guild. In 1482 he moved to Milan, serving for the next seventeen years as Duke Ludovico Sforza’s official “painter and engineer.” Though fewer than twenty of his paintings survive, Leonardo is considered one of the most influential painters of all time. The archetypal Renaissance man, he was also an inventor, architect, and engineer, and his numerous notebooks suggest designs for, among other things, an ornithopter, an automated bobbin-winder, and a parachute.