Leonardo da Vinci was an artist, a scientist, and an inventor. He studied the anatomy of the human body and designed inventions that were impossible in his day, such as the helicopter. He was born on April 15, 1452 at Achiano, near Vinci, Italy. From a young age, he had a thirst for knowledge of all kinds, and he brought this varied knowledge to everything he did. He created his own tools and paints, and he worked as both an artist and a theatrical designer.

As many people have been, I was introduced to his most famous painting, The Mona Lisa, at an early age. Even then, I knew I was intrigued by him, and in the third grade, I did my own imitation of the Mona Lisa.

He didn’t follow any of the trends of the time. Artistically he followed his own vision, and his designs and inventions were ground-breaking and were sometimes called heretical by the leaders of the day. Even as he was creating art in the age of the Renaissance, he was still a radical.

Even 600 years after his death, he is still remembered for being ahead of his time.

He is my friend. He is my hero. And he inspires me to move forward, no matter what. The roads will not always be dry, but neither will they always be wet. He reminds me to keep going forward, hoping for the best, preparing for the worst, and never giving up.

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