The Society of Bluffton Artists

Meet Our Instructors

Mary was born in and lived in New York state until she and her husband moved to Bluffton, SC in 2017. 

When living in NY, Mary taught at Once Upon a Dish Studio,  worked for two faux interior painting companies, and completed many commissioned jobs. She was also a member of the Nyack Art Collective and Color Pencil Society.

After moving to Bluffton, she was judged into the National Association of Women Artists and is a founding member of the South Carolina chapter.

Mary started teaching art to Pre-K students at Cross Schools, and this is her 4th year teaching art to 6-12 year olds at the SOBA Art School. She loves to give the children a challenge and see their growth as young artists. 

Mary says that “The best part of teaching is seeing proud faces on the kids”.

Marie Camenares – Pastels and Alcohol Ink

My studies of art at C.W. Post College in Brookville, New York have helped me discover my passion for the vibrancy of pastels, and the luminosity of watercolors. Bringing to others feelings of relaxation, meditation, joy, wonder and mystery when viewing my paintings is my goal.

I was the featured artist for one-woman shows at vineyards, and libraries on Long Island, in New York. My work has been at art exhibits at community centers in Long Island, NY, at the SOBA Gallery in Bluffton and at Alexander’s Restaurant on Hilton Head.

As I continue to expand my love of art and horticulture, I have taught classes at The Bayard Cutting Arboretum Horticultural Society, The Smithtown Garden Club, many libraries throughout eastern Long Island, and Good Shepherd Church. These classes included working with acrylics, watercolors, pastels, alcohol ink, mosaics and other crafts. Recently, at SOBA Gallery Bluffton, I have been able to teach classes in pastels, and alcohol ink.

Lynne Drake –  Acrylics

Creating art is a passion I discovered at a very young age – it gives me purpose, calm and joy. I tend to illustrate and enjoy painting nature and organic forms, figures and expression – beauty. 

I’ve dabbled in many mediums including drawing, pastels, acrylics, oils and watercolors. Educational credits include a BFA and MALS in art and education. I’ve also received multiple art and academic scholarships. 

Currently, I am semi-retired and teach acrylic painting in Sun City, Bluffton SC and SOBA Gallery also in Bluffton. I’m fortunate to have a supportive husband who is also an artist and sculptor – together we keep ourselves busy in the local art scene.

Missy Gentile – Oil Enamel

Missy is an abstract painter currently based in Bluffton, SC

She draws inspiration from her life experiences and her core values of service and human connection.

After receiving her B.S. degree she took off alone for Paris, France with a one way ticket and lots of moxie. Her experiences living the cultural life in Paris for 3 years served as a foundation for her life.

After Paris, Missy settled in Houston, Texas for 20 years and devoted herself to her art and serving others.  She created her first studio/gallery and volunteered in hospitals with cancer patients and at OMEGA HOUSE, a hospice for Aids patients , where she facilitated connections and emotional care through sharing the creative art experience.

Missy taught in the Houston school system and began her life as a working artist, exhibiting and selling her work.  Her paintings are in collections internationally.  In 2002 Art Business News featured her works inspired after 911.   Her paintings have appeared in other publications throughout the country, including the cover for local PINK Magazine with a piece called “Feeling Her Power”.

Currently Missy teaches Abstract Painting at SOBA (Society of Bluffton Artists) and privately to children and adults.  Her beginning statement for each class is a quote from the artist Helen Frankenthaler:  “One of the first rules is no NO RULES”. 

Missy’s art reflects her vision of no boundaries.  What the eye sees is what it is…..how it moves you is most important.

Jess Hooper – Founder of Creative Current

Hooper is the founder of Creative Current and mom of 2. She has a passion for helping people make time and space for peace through exploring art, music and poetry, sharing Mindfulness tools and practicing Yoga.

“I am fascinated by neuroscience, specifically the way our brains work and react to creative stimuli.  I find all creative processes to be insightful, intuitive and healing. It inspires me how art can create connection and bring people together. It is my purpose to guide people to quiet the mind, experience flow  & reap the positive benefits of creativity”. 


Bachelors degree in Studio Arts with a concentration in Painting – I have been teaching group and individual art lessons since 2005. 

Kendra Natter – Photography

Kendra is an expert photographer and an active board member of the Camera Club of Hilton Head and Carolinas’ Nature Photographers Association. Her work has been featured by the SOBA Gallery, the Art League of Hilton Head Island, Savannah Wildlife Refuge, and Coastal Discovery Museum. Kendra has won over 125+ ribbons in photographic competitions.

Kendra teaches a variety of photography courses. Her photography business offers printing and custom framing services, family portraits, pet portrait, photography lessons and  photography tours.

Website: https://www.kendranatterphotography.com/

Barbara Pecce – Watercolor

Barbara studied art history, fashion illustration, and painting at Florida State University. Barbara developed her painting style in Puerto Rico, where she lived for 47 years with her husband and children.

Barbara paints in the traditional transparent watercolor method. The rich colors and reflections of sunlight and shadows she observed in Puerto Rico continue to inspire her paintings.

“This seems to me the perfect medium for capturing the tropical colors that surround us.”

Barbara was a founding member and president of the Puerto Rico Watercolor Association.

She also taught watercolor at the Liga de Arte in Old San Juan and at the Museo de Arte. Barbara currently volunteers as Education and Workshop Coordinator at the SOBA Art School.

Sandra Campeau – Multimedia

Sandra is a multimedia artist. She minored in art at Union University in Jackson, Tennessee and continued her art practice over the years.  

Sandra believes in “skill building art”, different small projects that can be completed in a short period of time, to try new techniques. So many people think they should just be able to paint. But doing small exercises, studying composition, and color theory; this leads to great paintings.   Without a regular practice, it is very difficult to improve skills. She teaches r these techniques to enable artists to grow in their skills and understanding of how to create great art.