Henri Fantin-Latour was a French painter and lithographer best known for his flower paintings and group portraits of Parisian artists and writers. Born Ignace Henri Jean Théodore Fantin-Latour in Grenoble, Isère, he received drawing lessons from his father in his youth. In 1850 he entered the Ecole de Dessin, where he studied with Lecoq de Boisbaudran.
After studying at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris from 1854, he devoted much time to copying the works of the old masters in the Musée du Louvre. Although Fantin-Latour befriended several of the young artists who would later be associated with Impressionism, including Whistler and Manet, Fantin's own work remained conservative in style.