This is What the Old Outer Banks Looks Like in Beautiful Art

July 04, 2018

Corolla Stallion is an original oil painting by Karla Mann

By Chelsea Reed

Miles of wild open beaches, salty winds, and sea oats, rustic cottages from days gone by. There’s a certain charm unmistakable to the Outer Banks days of yesteryear that both year-round locals and visitors savor. Many things have changed since then, but their memories live on in our hearts and the paintings of those with the talented gift to capture them on canvas. Let’s share a few, shall we?

One Hour Before the Crowds, by Janet Groom Pierce

John's Drive Inn titled One Hour Before the Crowds is an oil painting by Janet Pierce and Outer Banks artistInspired by a favorite local tradition, this fun wraparound oil painting beckons memories of a time before giant fast food chains commanded the world’s attention. French fries and milkshakes were locally made and enjoyed with good friends and an amazing beach view. Thankfully, much of that remains the same in a number of places along the Beach Road thanks to the enduring spirit of local Outer Banks businesses.

Looking For Fish, by Jon Houglum

Back in the day, fishing in the Outer Banks wasn’t thought of as an industry. It was a way of life – and most likely the means for your dinner that night. This oil painting of a boy fishing on the Roanoke Sound is a great picture of simpler days watching for your next great catch and the “hoi toide on the sound soide.”

Corolla Stallion, by Karla Mann

This majestic painting of a wild stallion is a good snapshot of Outer Banks history. While the Corolla wild horses can be seen today, their original tromping grounds were much larger. The ocean side of the Banks was mostly uninhabited besides clusters of summer cottages. That meant wild horses could roam free for hundreds of miles! They weren’t the only ones who claimed the beach, either. Chickens, cows and other livestock also commingled and often became dinner for the local residents who lived near the sound.

OBX Icon, by Janet Groom Pierce

A well-named oil painting that reflects a common style of historical Outer Banks beach cottages. Some, like the surviving Unpainted Aristocracy homes, were built atop of wood pylons. Others, like this one, were simple ground level bungalows. Recreational hunters and families from the North Carolina mainland would retreat to the Outer Banks and stay in these places to escape from the thick summer heat and city stress. That was how tourism got its start!

Seaside Art Gallery – An Original Outer Banks Landmark

All of these paintings and more can be seen at Seaside Art Gallery’s Outer Banks Squared - The Art Show, which starts July 2nd, 2018. Did you know that Seaside is also a landmark from the old Outer Banks? From our humble beginnings on the wild beaches, we’ve been around for over 50 years and continue to bring the finest original artwork to the Outer Banks. See for yourself and be inspired by the rich history of this beautiful land we call home!

Chelsea Reed is a freelance copywriter. She writes articles, blogs, websites and online content from her base in North Carolina.





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