Since his early days, Adolf Hitler wanted to become a painter. However, ignoring his burning desire to attend a classical high school and become an artist, his father sent him to the ‘Realschule’ in Linz. As his father suddenly died in 1903, Adolf pursued his dream of being an artist and applied for admission to the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna.
Unfortunately, his dream was shattered, when he was rejected twice by the institute, once in 1907 and again in 1908, as he did not draw enough heads in his art and copied traditional paintings rather than creating his own work.
However, as the institute considered him more talented in architecture than in painting, they suggested him to apply to the academy's School of Architecture. It was not acceptable to Adolf, since that would have required him to return to the secondary school from which he had dropped out and which he was unwilling to do.
As his mother died of breast cancer on 21 December 1907, Adolf soon ran out of money and moved to Vienna, where he was forced to live in shelters for the homeless. During those years of distress in Vienna (1908-1913), he produced hundreds of works and peddled his paintings and postcards to try to earn a living.
He also used to frequent the cafes and spend his time among the artists, with the hope that perhaps someday one of those masters would guide him properly. Unfortunately, nobody offered him to help in his pursuit. Thus, the inadvertence of the master artists and living in abject poverty gradually fostered the simmering hatred in the heart of the future dictator in his formative years.
Adolf Hitler learned how to draw and paint on his own, without any formal training and created more than 2,000 paintings during his life. Samuel Morgenstern, an Austrian businessperson, bought many of the young Hitler's paintings and according to his database, the major buyers of his paintings were Jewish.
At the age of 21, Hitler painted his first self-portrait in 1910, which was discovered by US Army Sergeant Major Willie J McKenna in 1945 in Essen, Germany, along with twelve other paintings by Hitler.
A good number of his paintings were recovered after World War II and were sold at auctions for tens of thousands of dollars. The United States Army seized the others and are still held by the Government of the United States.