The Man of Renaissance: Leonardo Da Vinci

Many individuals know Leonardo Da Vinci as an artist, mainly because of The Mona Lisa. But, despite that, Da Vinci was much more than just an artist and was, in a true sense, “The Man of Renaissance.”

He was an artist, a scientist, and an inventor from the 16th century. Even though he is best known as a dramatic artist, Leonardo also conducted countless experiments in his lifetime. Moreover, he gave groundbreaking inventions at that stage when ‘invention’ even as a designation, was not profound.

His artworks always remained hotspots for attention because his experiments were never published. The segment below illustrates Leonardo Da Vinci as an ideal man from the Renaissance era. Grasp more about this legendary personality, his scientific inventions, famous artworks, and everything else that defines him.

Leonardo- The Scientist

Leonardo was a curious and creative man. From flowers to the human body, everything was intriguing to him. However, his fascination for science was something uncommon. Leonardo’s profound knowledge in zoology, botany, optics, aerodynamics, and hydrodynamics was vastly ahead.

His diligent understanding of various technological topics catches sight in his scientific writings. Many ideas and experiments he conducted back then were later proved after 300-400 years.

Some of his scientific notebooks include the most popular Codex Leicester. It is written on double-wide pages in a backward script of the classic Leonardo’s mirror writing. The book consists of images, text, and diagrams. It was named for Thomas Coke, the Earl of Leicester, who bought it in 1717, and his family owned it for 263 years.

It was Bill Gates who purchased this manuscript on 11 November 1994. It was sold at Christie’s auction house for an unbelievable value of $30 802,500. In July 1995, the name Codex Leicester was restored.

Leonardo – The Inventor

Artists in Renaissance time had a hard time earning money. A solitary reason why Vinci put his drawing skills to work on sketching inventions and earning some extra cash. Back in the 16th century, it was easier to repair the machine than to invent it. Leonardo was a pioneer who made machines whose blueprints exist today.

Vinci used his out-of-the-world observation skills to invent machines just like the paintings of Leonardo da Vinci. He worked on their designs, structure, and functioning. His only motive was to improve the existing devices and create new ones.

He designed a helicopter and some other flying machines as well. Although, these machines had no base and were very impractical. But his designs had principles of good aerodynamics in consideration. Apart from it, he designed a calculator, concentrated solar power, gave tentative theories on spiritual concepts, and much more.

Leonardo – The Artist

At 15, Da Vinci began an apprenticeship with Andrea del Verrochio, a very famous French artist. He learned a lot of skills and painting techniques just by observing Verrochio’s painting style. Andrea’s work inspires Leonardo’s application to paint realistic-looking pictures.

Many artists in the Renaissance era only used to paint overemphasized muscular bodies. But, Leonardo was different. His studies show physical proportions of the human body, and paintings represent lifelike people. Later in the 16th century, Leonardo set a standard of what realism and renaissance art meant.

Leonardo’s paintings are a great combination of science and art. Using his ability to draw perfect anatomical structures and how objects are perceived through the human eye. He brought to life the real sketches.

Da Vinci’s Artistic Perspectives

Da Vinci was a man of conviction, and all his paintings are great iconic pieces. But what makes them unique is their painting style. Da Vinci, throughout his artistic walk of life, followed simple creative perspectives, which are:

Realism Through Observation

Da Vinci was a perfectionist. His paintings showcase the minutest details that the actual objects had. His observation skills let him paint realistic scenes of landscapes, people, and animals. His artworks from different angles had different expressions.

Such expertise in paintings was because he noticed an object from top to bottom, right to left, and upside down. In addition, the artworks are so realistic that they reflect different appearances when seen in bright or dim light.

Open Window Perspective

During 16th-century renaissance art, there were a lot of questions about painting 3D objects on flat surfaces. That’s when the “open window” perspective came into practice.

Linear perspective, a system of mathematical rules, was developed for painters to achieve realism. Leonardo’s paintings personify the linear perspective groundwork to create 3D and realistic effects.

The Golden Ratio

In 1498, Luca Pacioli wrote a book on the mathematical proportion “De Divina Proportione,” meaning “On the Divine Proportion.” This book was about the “golden ratio” for applications used in art and architecture. But some of Leonardo’s paintings had already used the concept of “golden ratio” before even collaborating with Luca.

Vinci’s Famous Artworks

Leonardo gained his entire legacy and fame mainly because of his artworks. His artworks are monumental possessions that still exist in different parts of the world and are sold for millions.

Some of the most iconic artworks of Leonardo Vinci include The Mona Lisa, The Last Supper, The Annunciation, and The Adoration of The Magi. The centuries-old Mona Lisa by Leonardo is still an unresolved mystery as well as a controversial piece of art. Besides paintings, he mastered the art of sculptures as well.

His most famous sculptures include the David(1501), presently in Accademia, Florence, and the Pieta(1499), presently in St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City.

The Bottom Line

It is rightly said, “legends never die.” They continue to live forever for the great works in their lifetime. And so was Leonardo Da Vinci, a legend that nature can’t produce twice. A single man but a variety of roles.- an artist, a scientist, an inventor, and a sculptor. Leonardo Da Vinci just made the Renaissance era his own.