Zwei Stehende Akte displays the elegantly curved and fluid lines that characterize Schiele's drawings from 1913. Having arrived at his mature style in 1910, the artist spent two years depicting gaunt, angular nudes, many of which were children. However, Schiele's predilection for these subjects brought him trouble in the spring of 1912, when he was incarcerated on allegations involving the indecent depiction of child models. Although the original charges were dropped, Schiele stopped using child models and focused mainly on erotic drawings of women. Addressing this transition, Jane Kallir has written: "It was not so much that the artist intentionally toned down his subject matter, as that he, perhaps subconsciously, introduced an element of aesthetic distancing that placed more emphasis on unusual compositional angles and poses than on emotional impact" (in op. cit., p. 151).
A brief trip to Munich that he took in August of 1912 also contributed to his new approach to the figure. Schiele had contributed to an exhibition of Der Blaue Reiter earlier that year, and this subsequent visit permitted him to study firsthand the work of fellow exhibitors such as Franz Marc, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, and Paul Klee. This encounter with German expressionism encouraged Schiele to pursue increased experimentation with the human form. His drawings of 1913 display a variety of unusual poses and inventive placement of the figure within the sheet. Kallir states, "This year  produces one of the most profound changes of the artist's career: the switch from two-dimensional to three-dimensional orientation...Schiele's drawing style becomes more volumetric over the course of 1913." (ibid., p. 490).
The present drawing is notable for its dramatic cropping. During this period, Schiele often ignored or otherwise deemphasized the faces of his models, but the present nudes' heads are cut off entirely and only their lithe torsos remains visible. His excision of other customary markers of human individuality such as hands serves to underscore the frank sexuality of the naked models. Of course, Schiele was not alone in his visual isolation of a female nude for erotic effect, and followed predecessors such as Edgar Degas, Auguste Rodin, and Gustav Klimt.
The colouring of this work, however, was applied by another hand. This addition was possibly contemporary to the original drawing, since we know that anonymous artists filled-out Schiele's graphic creations since the beginning of the 1910s. Kallir has observed, 'From the start, Schiele's watercolours were priced higher than his uncoloured drawings, and this led to the temptation to embellish his creations in order to increase their value.' (ibid, p. 262).