Ed Vebell was born and raised in Chicago, in 1921, and showed an interest in art at an early age. He attended Harrison Art School at the age
of 14, where he learned life drawing. Upon graduating from high school, Vebell won three art scholarships. During World War II, he spent a year on the staff of The Stars and Stripes,
illustrating various battles. He illustrated a story on the Russians in Berlin and, after the war, sketched the proceedings of the Nuremberg war trials.
Fluent in French, Vebell took his
discharge in Paris, where he opened a studio and freelanced for French magazines and advertising agencies. He later returned to the United States and settled in New York City, continuing his
freelance work. His clients included Reader's Digest, Life Magazine, Sunday Mirror Magazine, Sports Illustrated, Sports Afield, Skiing and Tennis Magazine. Vebell worked in stamp design as well,
creating a total of 16 stamps for the U.S. Postal Service.