The artist envelopes this scene in an extravagant amount of detail which helps to make this painting one of Leighton's most memorable. Light floods in from the left hand side, suggesting that these two figures are near to a window or entrance. The figure on the left is deliberately shorter, allowing the light to continue on to the face of her friend. The taller woman immediately becomes the main focal point, and is faced towards the viewer.
The depiction of architecture within art has alwaays been a respected craft. Famously, Van Eyck would paint his frames to give a sculptured look, whilst other painters have spent considerable amounts of time perfecting background pillars, buildings and more. Several members of the very early Renaissance made huge advancements in the way in which perspective is displayed in frescos, too. See Paolo Uccello, Piero della Francesca and XXX for examples of this.