Raphael was born at Urbino, a most important city of Italy, in 1483, on Good Friday, at three in the morning. His parents were Giovanni de Santi and Magia di Battista Ciarla; his mother died in 1491. Giovanni de Santi, a painter himself, gave his son his first instruction in painting, and, before his death in 1494, when Raphael was 11, he had introduced the boy to humanistic philosophy at the court. At the age of seventeen, his father sent him to Perugia to become an apprentice under the highly regarded Perugino. In the four years he spent with Perugino's, Raphael learned all that his master could teach him, and the period passed without problems or challenges. In his early works, Raphael remained faithful to the Perugino School. Raphael had such extraordinary talent right from the beginning and was an innate absorber of influences. Whatever he saw, he took possession of, always growing by what was taught to him. It is well known that while Raphael was studying Perugio's style, he imitated him so closely that his portraits cannot be distinguished from those of his master. .
Raphael is most known for his lightness of composition in the classical spirit. There are two major periods in Raphael's short life, the Florentine and the Roman. In 1504, Raphael moved to Florence, the influence of which flows through his art. He learned by studying the works of the masters, and thus developed the methods of representing the play of light and shade on a figure (chiaroscuro), anatomy and dramatic action most frequently associated with the high Renaissance. While in Florence, his style became more animated and informal. In the influential years of his career, he had a tendency to rework many of Leonardo's ideas, and found in them a serenity of expression and composition that would stay with him for the rest of his life. Also present in his work, in the postures and the anatomical development of his characters, is the influence of Michelangelo.