Ferdinand Eugene Victor Delacroix was born in France on 26th April, 1798. His father was Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand-Perigord, a statesman. Delacroix had a quiet childhood. He developed his own artistic and musical passions and at the age of 17 he began his classical studies. He later on became a pupil of Baron Pierre-Narcisse Guerin, a famous academic painter. The fact that his father was a statesman helped him to receive many hard to come by, important, patronages from the French government. For example, in 1822, he was put in charge of architectural decorations from Adolphe Theirs, another statesman. Delacroix’s early life was influenced by fellow Romantic artists as well as Frederic Chopin, a polish pianist and composer.
Delacroix had a long successful career, receiving continual commissions from the French government and was favored by critics of his day. His intense passion for bright colors and the violent nature of his subject matter changed the art world forever. The technique he used is said to have had a lasting impact on subsequent generations, such as the Impressionist and Post-Impressionist movements. Delacroix created and exhibited his first masterpiece known as Dante and Vigil in Hell. This piece contributed to the development of the Romantic Movement. It was inspired by Dante’s Divine Comedy. Early on, Delacroix’s work reflected the influence of Peter Paul Ruben's color genius and Michelangelo's modeled figures. Throughout his intermediate years, he continued to paint under the influence of works by Shakespeare, Lord Byron and Dante. Delacroix died in France in 1863 leaving behind thousands of drawings, watercolors and prints as well as a legacy that forever changed the art world.