Heat olive oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add carrots, celery, and onion to the pan along with salt, pepper, cayenne, garlic powder, and onion powder. Saute until tender, about 7-9 minutes, stirring frequently.
While vegetables saute, place the corn in a large bowl and cover with warm water. Let sit five minutes; strain.
Place two cups of the corn in a food processor and pulse for 45-60 seconds to create a thickening paste; set aside.
Add the vegetable broth and vegetable boullion (if using) to the pot and bring to a boil. Stir in potatoes and bring to boil again then reduce to low and simmer 10 minutes.
Stir in corn paste reserved from food processor along with bay leaves and remaining 1 cup whole corn kernels. Bring the pot back to a boil then reduce to low. Simmer for 30 minutes. Check for seasoning and adjust before serving. Remove bay before serving.