My dear Vincent
Don’t bother yourself with the studies that I deliberately left in Arles as not being worth the trouble of transporting them.1
On the other hand the sketchbooks2
contain notes which are useful to me, and I accept your offer to send them to me. As well as the 2 masks and gloves3
29 rue Boulard
2nd lieutenant 3rd Zouaves
Guelma — Place de Constantine
I regret that I inadvertently took it with me (all my apologies). I’ve seen Bernard
twice since I arrived in Paris. He has a very good chance of not being a soldier because of his narrow chest, and he won’t know his fate until the end of February. It appears that his father
is bothering him more and more on account of the painting and the unfortunate letter I wrote to his family.4
No, I haven’t done any portraits yet, having spent my time on errands.5
Now that I have a studio in which I sleep,6
I’m going to put myself to work. I’ve begun a
series of lithographs to be published in order to get myself known.7
Moreover, it’s on your brother’s advice and under his auspices.
I’m going to buckle down to the portraits of the whole Schuffenecker
family, he, his wife and his 2 children in vermilion aprons.8
It’s darned cold in Paris at the moment — in addition I’ve amused myself doing croquis at the market,9
and I’m going to get some porters from the market to pose with their big hats, carrying sacks and sides of meat. I’m carried away at top speed by it.
I don’t know if I’ll go to
everything will depend on the money situation, and that’s as clear as mud. In any case, if I go there I’ll remember the advice you gave me about it — I don’t know, for example, if my weak voice will be heard. In any case the common good
interests me enormously, and I’ll try to do the right thing.