Mr Whiteoak was born in England to a farming family and was artistic from the age of 14.
He trained as an artist and gained high results in a City and Guilds of London Institute exam.
He served in the Royal Air Force as a medical attendant during World War Two and spent time in Egypt where he covered hospital walls with murals.
He came to New Zealand in the late 1950s after a brief stint in Australia with his only brother John. Mr Whiteoak then moved to Titirangi and met his first wife Martha. The bush and Manukau Harbour views from his Titirangi home studio inspired his work.
He spent 30 years teaching at The Auckland Society of Arts and toured New Zealand as a roving tutor, eventually winning a Bledisloe Award for services to the industry.
Mr Whiteoak, who died on December 11 2010 after a short illness, aged 89, was a keen traveller.