Corrie LaVelle Ebel


Corrie's (stunning!) art is a permanent installation at the entrance of Vela.  We were so fortunate to discover her work, and asked her to create a piece that would capture the bright, elevated, fluid experience we want each of our guests to have at Vela.  We are so grateful to Corrie for sharing her talent with us.

What inspired you to become an artist?

The first time I touched encaustic paint was probably in 2011. My best friend was teaching art classes and I would accompany her as her lackey…. simultaneously soaking up all that she had to teach her students. In all the years of our friendship I never took a keen interest in creating art myself. I have always thoroughly enjoyed art, but didn’t realize that I was capable of creating it on my own. What I didn’t understand was that my entire life I was creating art unintentionally. I would decorate my room by painting directly on my walls images. I spent every penny I had on paint. Yet I never once thought about the fact that I was a painter.

It wasn’t until about 2013, when I emotionally hit the roughest patch of my life, did I realize that I NEEDED art. 

As time passed I studied through trial and error the basics of pouring resin, painting in encaustic, mounting art, color theory, and much more. I would run to the art supply store and buy out every medium that I was learning. Soon my supplies overtook my kitchen, and I moved to the basement. I would find myself toiling away for hours. In the beginning most of my projects were utter failures. In fact, that’s how I found my current style.  I was experimenting with fusing photography on rice paper and layering encaustic on top. I didn’t care for how it was turning out. In an effort to salvage the picture I was delicately melting the wax off with a heat gun. As the wax pigments started to blend and move I started seeing colors and patterns that were breathtaking. I couldn’t paint fast enough. One by one beautiful abstract imagery evolved that spoke to me through movement and layers.

What's your creative process like for creating new work?

It is such a pleasure to start a new piece of art, and every beginning is different. Most often the piece is driven by an emotion. It’s not that I’m trying to evoke a response from the viewer. It is more of a form of communication for me. “This is my piece, and this is the journey I am on with it today.” I see my kids in my art, nature, colors, and feelings. Just today I was watching my youngest child struggle to read. I could see in her eyes the process of frustration, trial, and then triumph. When I paint it are those moments that flood back to me that I try and convey.  

What’s makes your job awesome?  

I don’t think I am capable of ever turning creativity off, and my job allows me to express who I am and to fulfill the need to create. Beyond that and more importantly  I find huge amounts of satisfaction in giving others pleasure through what I make and do. It is always causes my heart to leap with my work resonates with others. 

What makes your job challenging? 

Deadlines, and the fear of underperforming are always my biggest challenges. They are hurdles that I struggle with constantly.

What’s excites you most about the landscape in the art world today?   

Seattle is such a vibrant and supportive community in regards to art.  I am constantly in awe of what people are capable of. In general I’m excited by all the potential the talent in this city has and what the future holds as the artists find outlets.  The more art and artists I am exposed and introduced to the more humbled I become.

What are your favorite things right now?

Honestly, one of my favorite parts of art is the relationships. Every project I rely on another craftsman to help me complete my work. My wood panels are often hand made, the metal fabricated to my specifications, the imagery edited in a photo lab, the list goes on. Each person I not only appreciate for their skill, but for who they are. These are relationships and connections that keep the world of art from being solitary.

Connect with Corrie: 

Insta: corrielavelleart
Web :

Corrie LaVelle Ebel
Instagram: corrielavelleart