Artist Hal Cronkhite

An example of fine art by Hal Cronkhite

Photo of Hal Cronkhite


During my working life, I was used to a shirt and tie every day, so when I contemplated retirement, the logical transition to a leisure life seemed to be chinos and golf shirts. Reality, however, led to a series of classes and workshops in oil painting and, there, I found my passion. When you pursue a passion, you have to dress for it. Oil painting ruins a golf shirt and a pair of chinos in short order. The appropriate wardrobe for oils is old blue jeans and T-shirts. The oldest ones I own are truly paint smeared and not particularly presentable in polite company. The newer ones stay clean longer. I still don't have any chinos.
 Artistically, impressionism suits my perspective. I like the variety of expression it allows in terms of light, color and emotion. Although my subject matter is eclectic, I have been surprised to find that I do enjoy painting people. We understand ourselves better than any other creature so maybe it's easier to convey the nuances of emotion and intent, visually, for  people than for other animals. 
The first aim of any of my paintings is to make something visually pleasing (dare I say beautiful?). Anything else I may achieve in a piece I try to make subordinate to this. I try to avoid superfluous symbolism; it seems to me that there is enough substance in the world I portray to generally make symbolism unnecessary. But, in art, no rule is hard and fast.

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