One of the reasons why I have no regular job, and why I have not had a regular job for years, is quite simply that my ideas differ from those of the gentlemen who hand out the jobs to individuals who think as they do. It is not just a question of my appearance, which is what they have sanctimoniously reproached me with. It goes deeper, I do assure you.
Impressionism was the name given to a certain form of observation when Monet, not content with using his eyes to see what things were or what they looked like as everybody had done before him, turned his attention to noting what took place on his own retina (as an oculist would test his own vision).
We are getting mixed up with the French tradition. In talking about the necessity to 'finish' a thing, we then said American painters 'finish' a thing that looks 'unfinished', and the French, they 'finish' it. I have seen Henri Matisse's that were more 'unfinished' and yet more 'finished' than any American painters. Matisse was obviously in a terrific emotion at the time and he was more 'unfinished' than 'finished'.
Rentals sank, living rose. I could not afford help. I must be owner, agent, landlady and janitor. I loathed landladying... I tried in every way to augment my income. Small fruit, hens, rabbits, dogs - pottery... I never painted now - had neither time nor wanting. For about fifteen years I did not paint.
Until the war [between France and Germany] as you know, my life was a mess. I wasted it. It was only at l'Estaque, when (1870-1871) I thought things over, that I really understood Pissarro, a painter like myself... He was a determined man. I was overcome by a passion for work. It wasn't that I hadn't been working before, I was always working. But what I always missed, you know, was a comrade like you..