Elizabeth Sonrel was the daughter of the painter from Tours, Stephane Sonrel, from whom she received her early artistic guidance. To further her artistic studies she moved on to Paris where she became the pupil of the famous artist Jules Lefebvre at his Ecole des Beaux-Arts. The Tours museum owns her diploma work, Pax et Labor, which was executed in 1892 at the age of 18 and shows how tremendously precocious she was.
She showed at the Salon des Artistes français in Paris from 1893 to 1941, especially large watercolors of idealized women that have both a certain Pre-Raphaelite intensity (since a journey in Italy, to Florence and Rome where she discovered the Renaissance painters, she deeply admired Botticelli) and an affinity to French symbolist painting. She was inspired by Arthurian romance, biblical subjects, archaic legends and medieval love. Some of her mystical works include Ames errantes (Salon of 1894) and Les Esprits de l’abime (Salon of 1899) and Jeune femme a la tapisserie which has an inspiration close to the famous symbolist Maxence. She did not however adhere to the symbolist movement that, besides, totally ignored her.