Arakelian was born near Nakhichevan, and studied in Tiflis under Eghishe Tatevosyan and then under Konstantin Korovin in Moscow.
His creative method was born through direct communication with nature. In his landscapes the artist opens up to the onlooker his warm and loving soul, revealing the purity of his feelings and his trepidation before the surrounding world. Arakelyan was skilled in capturing fleeting moments: when he painted Sevan, he was seized with youthful passion: when he spoke with the severe hills, he was thoughtful and manly: when he saw the union of people and animals on earth, he became drunk on happiness.
Under the master's touch the image of the Armenian landscape was enriched with intimacy and an elegiac quality.