Luli Creative House, founded by Ariel Panowicz, is a vibrant, curated space for creatives in Omaha.
Since Luli’s debut in October of 2022, Ariel’s vision has quickly become a hub for photographers, creatives, and the local community. What started as a dream to provide a dedicated studio for photographers and creatives to bring their clients has evolved into a multifaceted venue that serves as both a creative studio and a gathering space for various community and corporate events.
Ariel, a photographer with 14 years of experience, always longed for a space where photographers and creatives could unleash their creativity in a supportive, empowering environment.
“I love the challenge of shooting out on location and finding cool, colorful, funky, unique spots,” Ariel said. “Typically, that’s going inside of a business that’s open to the public, and although that’s also wonderful, I felt like the community deserved a space that was specifically made for them to come create in.”
She envisioned a place where the local community could come together, celebrate, and connect. Fueled by her passion and the desire to fill this void in Omaha, Ariel conceptualized plans for Luli Creative House and put them into action.
Since its opening in October, Luli Creative House has blossomed into a kaleidoscope of colors and artistic energy. The space is a visual masterpiece, with every corner thoughtfully designed to evoke joy and happiness. Ariel’s background as a photographer shines through in her choice of vibrant and punchy colors, creating an atmosphere that is both welcoming and inspiring.
Ultimately, Ariel believes in the power of safe spaces where people feel comfortable and able to be themselves, just as they are. She has found that color has the ability to do just that.
Color can have a remarkable impact on our thoughts, emotions, and moods as humans, and Ariel is not one to underestimate its power. By being mindful of the colors we surround ourselves with, we can curate spaces to influence a person’s state of mind to be more creative, open-minded, vulnerable and the list goes on.
By weaving a mix of vivid hues with pockets of neutral tones, Ariel ensures that everyone can find a space that resonates with their creative vision. Each vignette designed by Ariel has its own individual color palette, which compliments the overall palette of the space. A creative can be intentional with these vignettes, carefully selecting the colors that help communicate the emotions or ideas they want to get across with their work.
“I did about 879 Photoshop mock-ups of what I wanted the space to look like,” Ariel said. Eventually, she landed at a point where she told herself, “Alright, I’m just going to go for it, start buying pieces, and hope that everything comes together.”
Curating the furniture and decor for Luli Creative House was a labor of love for Ariel. She wanted to strike a balance between mixed eras and modern aesthetics, resulting in a unique blend of secondhand and contemporary pieces.
Each vignette within the space tells a story, with Ariel carefully selecting a statement piece as the anchor and building the surrounding elements around it. From repurposing a 60-year-old mid-century couch found at a thrift store in Sioux City to painting Amazon tables to color match chairs she sourced locally, Ariel’s resourcefulness and DIY spirit are evident throughout the space.
“There’s really a mix of new furniture, vintage, and then there’s a good amount of DIY in here too,” Ariel said. “Sometimes, if you have a very specific vision and you can’t find it online or in stores, you just have to do it yourself. I’m not above painting an Amazon table!”
Luli Creative House embraces a mission of fostering happiness, connection, and empowerment. Ariel firmly believes in the power of bringing people together.
“I believe that Omaha is the type of place that if you love on it, it will love you back,” Ariel boasts. After less than a year of opening the doors, Luli Creative House proved she couldn’t be more correct.
The space serves as a warm and inviting sanctuary where individuals can be themselves, celebrate life’s milestones, and create lasting memories. Outside of just photoshoots, it has become a gathering place for baby and bridal showers, graduation parties, offsite team meetings, fundraisers, artist meetups, and private dinners.
Ariel’s commitment to supporting local artists is evident through the quarterly commissioned murals that showcase different artists’ talents and remind visitors of the importance of paying artists for their work.
Witnessing people’s happiness and the connections forged within the space brings her immense joy. Being able to facilitate events that help others find solace, navigate life transitions, and ultimately help people bring their own visions to life has been particularly rewarding.
However, balancing a full-time photography business, managing Luli Creative House, and being a mother and wife presents its own set of hurdles. Finding the right equilibrium requires constant adjustment and self-care, but Ariel’s determination and support from her community continue to propel her forward.
“You put your heart and soul into something, and ultimately there are so many unknowns,” Ariel explained. “Like anything, you just have to take one moment at a time and be gentle with yourself. All those uncertainties still exist, I’m just more acclimated to them now.”
The future holds even more possibilities for Luli Creative House, with its commitment to philanthropy and giving back. Each event hosted at Luli Creative House, whether ticketed or free, supports a different nonprofit, underscoring the belief in the power of community, generosity, and truly looking out for one another.
Additionally, Luli Creative House hosts a variety of events for the public throughout the year, including sound baths, where an expert leads the attendees through an immersive, full-body experience, using sound as a catalyst for relieving stress and healing the mind and body. Yoga sessions are another popular event hosted by Ariel who partners with local studios and yoga instructors to bring these sessions to life. Open workdays are also offered, where individuals can ditch the office for the day, bring their laptop, and get their work done while being inspired by the abundance of color in their surroundings.
In addition to the physical space, Luli Creative House has also expanded its online presence. With a well-curated website and active social media accounts, the venue has garnered a strong online following. This virtual extension allows Ariel to connect with a wider audience, share her passion for photography and creativity, promote upcoming events and workshops, selling tickets in her bio.
With her entrepreneurial spirit and dedication to creating a thriving creative ecosystem, Ariel is excited to see how Luli Creative House evolves and continues to impact the local community through color, creativity, and connection.