Raja Ravi Varma (1848-1906) was born in Kilimanoor Palace in Travancore, South India. At the age of 14, he moved to the Travancore Palace where he was taught watercolour painting by the palace painter Rama Swamy Naidu. Theodor Jenson, a British painter who was a guest of the Palace, introduced the techniques of oil painting to Varma. He began exhibiting his work and won several medals at international exhibitions, including one at Vienna and two at Chicago. He is best known for his images of Hindu gods and goddesses and scenes from India's great epics. In a break with Indian tradition, Ravi Varma used human models to create a form for his vision of Hindu gods. He also did a series of paintings of Indian women, often depicted in regional dress.