Art Creative 01

Alfred "Jim" James Nelson

December 10, 1936 ~ April 28, 2023 (age 86) 86 Years Old

Alfred "Jim" Nelson Obituary

Beloved local artist and builder, Alfred James “Jim” Nelson of Pawleys Island, SC, passed away April 28, 2023 at his home.

Jim was born on December 10, 1936, the son of Lester Alfred Nelson and Wanna Wood, and was raised in Greenville, South Carolina. Jim and his family have called Pawleys Island home since 1984.

Jim began his career as an artist, after studying graphic design and composition at Elsie Frank’s School of Art in Tampa, Florida. He later developed a love for architecture, studying architectural rendering at the University of Miami. Jim was known for designing homes across the Grand Strand, including Litchfield by the Sea, DeBordieu, and Prince George. His work was celebrated in architectural reviews and magazines.

After many years designing and building custom homes, Jim returned to his love of art. In 2003, he opened “Drawing the Line” at the Litchfield Exchange, and he was one of the original artists of the Island Art Gallery, where his work is still featured today. 

Jim created original art using watercolor, colored pencils, and pen and ink. His main interest and skill, however, was in the art of scratchboard, a challenging medium in which the artist creates intricate designs on an art board of white porcelain and black ink. The artist makes precise small strokes to reveal distinctive designs and striking textures. Jim’s mastery of scratchboard created stunning sea life and wildlife portraits, as well as abstract works. Jim was the only artist to work in scratchboard and color inks in the area.

Jim is survived by his loving wife, Emily; two children, James “Jay” Lee (Allison) Nelson and Gregory “Greg” Hunter (Annelisa) Nelson, and his beloved granddaughters, Addie and Bennett Nelson.

Jim was predeceased by his parents and his three sisters.

The family held a private family service.


In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Baskerville Food Pantry in Pawleys Island.

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