Hammer, Nails, Pencil and Paper - The Jim Loftis Story
Jim Loftis
Along with having all types of carpentry skills, Jim Loftis is quite a talented artist and especially enjoys doing pencil drawings.


Word usually gets around pretty quick when someone has carpentry skills, does electrical work, and has a background in the building trades. All this type of work is much in demand and probably always will be. I recently got to sit down for an interview with a young man who makes a living doing all this type work, but that isn’t all. He’s quite talented in a way not too many people are aware of. In addition to being a single father of three young sons, Nick, Ethan, and Dalton, who live with him, Jim Loftis is a very gifted artist. He has no formal training other than taking four years of art as a student at McGavock High School in Nashville where he graduated. Even though school work and studying didn’t interest him in the least, when he graduated in 1985, it was with honors. He was in the top five of his class receiving awards in the arts department that year.

In spite of the fact the Loftis family lived in the Nashville while Jim was growing up, he has roots in Overton County since that’s where his both his parents are originally from. He is the son of Sue (Matthews) Loftis and the late Jackie Loftis. After the death of Jim’s father in a tragic farm accident several years ago, his mother, Sue, continues to live in the Windle community, a place where now a total of seven generations of the Matthews family are connected to.

As a youngster growing up in Nashville, Jim liked to draw. He can’t remember a time in his life when he wasn’t interested in sitting down with paper and a pencil to sketch something. Jim grew up very familiar with the hussle and bussle of city life, but in his heart, he much preferred being in the country. But living in a busy city like Nashville didn’t keep him from having a lot of things around him most of the people in the neighborhood where he lived didn’t have, things like a pig in the back yard. He also raised rabbits and chickens, and even had a couple of pigeons that always managed to find their way back home in spite of the fact that Jim sold them two or three times. His heart was always into country living and eventually, he made Overton County home.

Most of the art work he does today is in pencil, but he has worked in acrylic paint from time to time. And one of the most amazing things about Jim’s natural artistic talent is that many of the old historic buildings he has drawn, he never laid eyes on, and that’s because they had long ago been torn down. Much of his work is done from old pictures.

It wasn’t until recently that Jim ever even though anyone might be interested in buying his work, but it doesn’t take but an instant to realize what a tremendous talent he has. He isn’t ready just yet to give up his handyman services to devote a lot of time to drawing, but I feel sure as the word gets around about this wonderful talent he possesses, he will found more often with a pencil and paper nearby rather than a hammer and nails.

For more information, Jim can be contacted at his home phone number of 931/403-1017.

Jim Loftis Art
This store was once located in the Windle Community of Overton County and was owned and operated by W.J. (Uncle Bill) Matthews, the great-grandfather of Jim Loftis.
Jim Joftis Art
Although Jim Loftis never personally saw this building that once stood on East Main Street in Livingston, his artistic ability captured the exact likeness of Winningham Service Station from an old photograph taken years ago.