Jacob Jordaens was born in Antwerp (Belgium) on May 19, 1593. Jordaens studied under Adam van Noort, who had also taught Peter Paul Rubens. Jordaens married Catharina, his master's daughter. He studied works of Italian masters, but most influential was Rubens who employed him to reproduce small sketches in large.
Jacob Jordaens painted in the same warmth of colour, the same truth to nature, the same energy of expression as Peter Paul Rubens did. But Jordaens is inferior in the character of his heads, in choice of forms, and in correctness of drawing. He sometimes sins against good taste, and in some of his humorous pieces the vulgarity is only atoned for by the animation. He employed his pencil also in biblical, mythological, allegorical and historical subjects, and is well-known as a portrait painter.
He found his models in the street or his family. Jordaens was not interested in aristocratic faces and delicate hands like his contemporary Antoon Van Dijck.
Jordaens became the leading figure in the Antwerp school after the death of Rubens, which gave him the chance to produce paintings for Churches and Courts. Jacob Jordaens died October 18, 1678 in his homecity Antwerp.