Although this painting depicts a single standing man, his generalised features indicate that this was not meant as a portrait. His costume suggests that this is an image of an anonymous soldier instead. In the 17th century, soldiers did not yet wear uniforms.
This subject relates to the barrack-room scenes Quast painted frequently. The artist is also known for his depictions of tavern scenes with peasants and beggars, usually with caricatured features. In this painting, he continues the tradition that had been established by artists such as Adriaen Brouwer and Adriaen van Ostade.