Scholars know nothing certain about the training of Bagnacavallo, who rose to fame in Bologna for his classical painting style influenced by Raphael. Certainly in Bologna by 1503, Bagnacavallo showed a graceful manner and elongated figures in his early paintings. Raphael's influence dominated Bagnacavallo's mature career, but scholars are uncertain whether they ever met. According to Giorgio Vasari, Bagnacavallo traveled to Rome at some point while Raphael was there, between 1508 and 1520. One of Raphael's altarpieces, with its clear geometry and sensuous presence, arrived in Bologna around 1514 and served as a strong, continuing reminder of modern classicism for local artists. Bagnacavallo and his peers also acquired information about this innovative style from the prints of fellow Bolognese artist Marcantonio Raimondi. Bagnacavallo's Raphaelesque paintings strongly influenced the early style of Pellegrino Tibaldi.