In a book that may at first appear obscure, Burton brings to life an ancient art that, in one form or another, has never really gone out of favor. The author, cofounder and president of the Hillard Society of Miniaturists and executive secretary to the Royal Society of Miniature Painters, Sculptors, and Gravers, looks at the work of 28 eminent miniaturists. These artists have taken the inspiration of early masters like Holbein and Hillard and moved into new media and subjects. Using watercolor, enamel, oil and acrylic on copper, and paper, ivory substitutes, and vellum, they find any theme, from traditional portraits to currant buns, fair game. Unfortunately, this U.K.-produced book is not nearly as practical for American audiences as Joan Cornish Willies's Miniature Painting: A Complete Guide to Techniques, Mediums, and Surfaces (Watson-Guptill 1995). The lists of suppliers and miniature painting societies in Willies's book have U.S. rather than British addresses. Moreover, Willies explores this lush and luminous art form with greater detail and variety. With its more clearly conceived layout, Willies's is ultimately the book of choice on miniature painting for most libraries.