After initial instruction from his father, the painter Thoman Burgkmair, Hans Burgkmair was apprenticed to Martin Schongauer in Colmar in 1489 or 1490. Back in Augsburg, he began working as a designer of woodcuts for Augsburg publishers. In 1498 he was licensed to work as a painter and established a workshop. Between 1501 and 1504, Burgkmair collaborated with Hans Holbein the Elder on a painting cycle for the chapterhouse of the Augsburg Dominican St Catherine convent. In 1503 he travelled along the Lower Rhine, and in 1507 he presumably spent a brief time in Italy. Even earlier he was in contact with the humanist Conrad Celtis. Through the agency of Konrad Peutinger, he began doing extensive work for Emperor Maximilian I, beginning in 1509. Burgkmair was significantly involved in Maximilian's major publishing projects, the woodcuts for the genealogy of the House of Habsburg, for the 'Theuerdank', the 'Weisskunig', and the 'Triumphal Procession'. In 1515 he produced the pen drawings ornamenting the emperor's prayer book. In recognition of his services, in 1516 he was awarded a coat of arms. In addition to numerous woodcut designs, Burgkmair's multifaceted oeuvre includes altarpieces and history paintings as well as portraits. He is considered the most important artist of the Renaissance in Augsburg.