Lautrec's work was intimately connected to the life of Montmartre from the start of his professional career. His first illustrations were published in the Montmartrois journals Le Courrier français and Le Mirliton in 1886, the same year that the Mirliton cabaret began displaying Lautrec's paintings. His work focused on the life of the butte, featuring the dance halls, circuses, cafés-concerts, and brothels that dotted the slopes of the hillside. An outgoing and social person, Lautrec befriended a heterogeneous group of Montmartre denizens, including aristocrats, streetwalkers, artists, writers, models, and cancan dancers. His portraits of his companions - often set in his studio, in neighborhood cafés, at dance halls, or at cafés-concerts - present a cross section of the population of Montmartre.