The present picture is an excellent example of the work of the Cranbrook colony, to which O'Neill belonged. In all, there were six members, the most senior being Thomas Webster (1800-1886) who settled at Cranbrook, a small town sixteen miles south-east of Tunbridge Wells, in 1856. The brothers F.D. and George Hardy, who were related to Webster on his mother's side, had preceded him by a few years, while O'Neill, J.C. Horsley, and A.E. Mulready divided their time between London and Kent, apparently having second homes or country cottages at Cranbrook or nearby Willesley. Graham Reynolds has written of the group that they 'had so homogeneous an attitude towards the interpretation of village drama that it seems an oversight that they did not choose a village called Cranford as their home' (Victorian Painters, 1966, p. 36). The chief influence on their style was Wilkie and, beyond him, Dutch seventeenth-century genre painting, these models determining not only their subject matter, but their preference for subdued, sometimes almost monochromatic colour schemes.