Van der Mijn came from a family of Dutch artists and his father, Herman van der Mijn (ca. 1684-1741), arrived in London around 1721 from Antwerp. After a childhood in London, Frans worked in Amsterdam and The Hague in the seventeen forties and fifties, returning to London to exhibit annually at the Society of Artists between 1761 and 1772.
This charming portrait resembles a grisaille oil now at the Rijksmuseum dated 1756. In keeping with much British portraiture of the period, an underlying naturalism (in this case Dutch), is enhanced by stylistic touches and exotic elements that hint at allegory and demonstrate admiration for French art—a combination that predominated in 18th century London until the Royal Academy was founded in 1768, and interest in Italian sources renewed.