arielle elise » arielle elise photography

why i do what i do…

The other night, I was going through old photos, getting ready to back them up so that I could sell my old laptop. I came across pictures that I had taken in Europe…in Malaysia…some in Costa Rica….

….and then it hit me. I remembered why I love to do what I do. Sometimes when people ask how I got into photography, I tell them that it started when I went overseas. And that is definitely the truth. I think it all started when I took my first trip out of the country at 15. I traveled to Europe and was able to meet so many amazing people, I was able to see so many new things. I wanted to capture that. On my 16th birthday I received my first DSLR (woohoo!!) The next year, I went to Malaysia and Costa Rica. The following year, Argentina. In these places while traveling, I was able to experience so much. I was able to hear stories from such beautiful people. The destitute, the rich, the old, and the young….such beautiful stories. And so naturally, I brought my camera along with me to these places. I took photos of the kids I talked to, of the elderly, the surroundings.

I would collect tons and tons of pictures on my computer from other countries…India, Cambodia, China. It was inspiring to me being able to see the way other people lived and how other photographers captured that. One of my favorite photo books of all time is “The Image of God: The Glory of Man” by Ric Ergenbright. In the book Ric talks about his travels and capturing people in their real-life circumstances that truly displays the glory of God. That is my desire in photography as well.

Honestly, I didn’t get into photography because it was the “in” thing or because it sounded cool. While others my age were out with friends during my oh so awesome teen years….I was having my younger brother and sister “model” for me. I would then take my camera on these trips and capture my experience in photos. Although I have a heart for other nations, it will be a while before I am able to travel overseas again. How I would love to take Leland overseas one day but at this time, financially it’s just not possible. Jay and I don’t feel led to be overseas at the moment. So for now, I am using what I have learned and capturing stories and beautiful moments in what I do everyday. In my son’s life, in moments day to day. I’m also capturing them in weddings.  And I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

Although these are old, some from the time I was 15 (that’s like ancient! ;) haha!)..I want to share a few photos from my different travels (in no particular order)….



These images are striking! Even during your “beginner” phase, you were truly talented!

You definitely have a gift for this, even at 15!

These images are so great and that waterfall picture is beautiful!
I didn’t know you had the chance to travel so much before you got to be ancient. (kidding) but that’s neat you experiences all the different cultures like you did.
Emily at Amazing Grapes

Thanks for sharing these beautiful pictures! Sometimes it’s easier to appreciate the beauty of different people and places through the view of a camera lens :) Definitely makes me want to travel again

These pictures are beautiful and I’m so glad you shared them. I’m so thankful for your blog and the encouragement that I always find here, from another sister in Christ. I’m here in Romania for the summer with five other people from my home church (calvary chapel east Anaheim). And I am excited more than ever now to capture all these moments while I’m here. God is good for letting us serve Him all over the world. And now you’re serving Him as a mom and wife in your beautiful family. Thank you so much, again, for being faithful to what God has called you to do. It is awesome!

Wow these are beautiful! I love the story of how you started…so inspiring. You are so talented and I just love your photography! :)

these photos are simply beautiful, thank you for sharing your story with us. I love photography not because it’s a cool thing or because I have a DSLR but mainly it’s because I too love capturing the beautiful moment. I hope one day I can take Kaylee back to my homeland Vietnam and take beautiful photos of another country like you did.

These are awesome! It’s so inspiring to see how God has is leading you in your photography =)

love your story so much! that’s definitely one of the reasons why i photograph as well. beautiful shots as well! :)

these are gorgeous photos!


I love these pictures!
Wish I could have gone all these places with you!
I think I was lost when you were not in class a few weeks after we met and you went to Argentina!

tommy g

I love the pics and I love you…

Beautiful, Arielle! You have a gift for sure.

Amazing travels!! The photos are all so vibrant & colorful!! This world is truly beautiful!! :)

I love how these pictures can all tell a story, all unique. I’m so glad you discovered your passion at a young age, you are so talented!

Beautiful post! xoxo

i had no idea you had been to so many places i’ve been, and done so much travel! this is probably one of my favorite posts :) so wonderful.


Thank you Elly! :)


Thank you so much Vivi!! :) Blessings!!


Thank you so much Sarah! :)


Thank you so much Natalie!! :)


thank you so much chelsea!! :)


thank you so much for the encouragement, Natalie!! :)


Thank you Alina! :)


Thank you so much Chanel! I so appreciate your encouragement, it means so much! Many, many blessings to you!! :)


Thank you so much Megan! :)


This is a little bit of a late reply but thank you, thank you!! Thank you for your encouragement! :)


Thank you so much, Faith! :)


Great pics Arielle. You really have a great eye for art (photos). you’ve been to alot of wonderful places and have prob seen more then an average person ever will! hang in there Leland will get to enjoy the same things or even better things then you have one day I am sure! :)


I love your style of photography. Thanks for sharing these beautiful photos from all over the world! (Oh, and congrats on expecting baby #2!)

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