Born in Columbia, South Carolina, Jim Palmer attended the University of South Carolina in 1960 before going on to study at the Atlanta School of Art in 1964. In 1966 he and his wife moved to Hilton Head Island, the second artist to do so during the Island’s early years. Since living here, he designed the cover of the Chamber of Commerce’ Islander Magazine, has been a contributing artist to the Island Events Magazine, and has painted many Low Country scenes that grace homes and businesses throughout the country.
Palmer was the illustrator for two books written by local authors: A Corner of South Carolina and Moonshadows. His work has been included in exhibits at the Hunter Museum in Chattanooga, TN; Mint Museum, Charlotte, NC; Southeastern Artists Exhibition, Atlanta, GA; Greenville County Art Museum, Greenville, SC; Callaway Gardens, Pine Mountain, GA; and Bay Hills Club, Orlando, FL.
His paintings are part of the private collections of C&S National Banks in Columbia and Hilton Head Island; Banker’s Trust Tower, Columbia, SC; Palmetto State Bank, Bluffton, SC, among others. Several paintings are also included in the collections of former Presidents Jimmy Carter and Dwight Eisenhower, former South Carolina Governor Robert McNair and singer John Denver.