London — Ramsgate
1873 – 1875
When Vincent arrived in London, he was deeply impressed by the large metropolis and the modernization underway in the city. He visited museums and discovered the literature of John Keats, George Eliot and Charles Dickens. The difficult existence of factory workers, graphically described by Dickens in Great Expectations, moved him. He started collecting prints from English magazines that depicted the suffering of the poor. Later he used these illustrations as a source for his own drawings, sometimes giving them titles in English such as Sorrow. Gradually it became clear that he was unsuited to the art trade. He considered a calling as a preacher, following in the footsteps of his father.