Soldiers know how to stand still for long periods and for that reason were often used as life models by artists. To show them as men of action was more difficult. The blur in this photograph is deliberate and gives an impression of movement. Hill 'would during the exposure give his camera an almost imperceptible jerk' to achieve this effect. The artist preferred the blur of the calotype to the more precise daguerreotype because the former looked like 'the imperfect work of a man' and the latter like 'the much diminished perfect work of god'.