Born in Newington, Ontario, he studied in Ottawa for three years under Paris-trained artist Prof. Chaume, focusing on still life. He attended Alan Beddoe’s drawing classes in Ottawa (1923-24). He continued to paint on his own for fifteen years and turned to professional painting in 1930.
In 1940, Burton joined the Royal Canadian Air Force. During the seven years he was in the RCAF he continued to paint and attended the Banff School of Fine Arts under A. Y. Jackson. Later he sketched with Jackson in the Rockies and in the Gatineau area with Maurice Haycock. Jackson was Burton’s main influence but Burton developed a distinct soft velvety tone in his work that was quite beautiful. As well as the Gatineau area he painted throughout Eastern Ontario, Alaska, Cape Breton, N, N.S., New Brunswick, and Portland, Maine U.S.A. He sketched on site with oils on board and later committed some of these sketches to canvas in a larger version. He held many Solo shows and his work can be found in many Public and corporate collections.