Love is subjective, personal and sometimes difficult to define. But one thing is certain; love is universal. The concept of love is never changing. It is a distinctive concept that is generational, and continues to be a part of our lives and culture. This is the same sentiment that is shared by Katya Moussatova (K.M.), an Economics student from the University of Ottawa, who began a campus campaign titled “Love Is.”. The campaign’s premise is to determine people’s perception of love in hopes that love is redefined in order to promote positivity on campus. As an enthusiast of photography and interpersonal conversations, Moussatova interviews and photographs anyone willing to share his or her definition of love. This process is then summarized with a picture of the individual and their definition of love that is then shared with all the followers of the campaign’s official Facebook page. With a lot of curiosity on the origination of the campaign, Love Is., I reached out to Moussatova with several questions, and it was truly interesting to have her on the other side of the interviewing process.
Briefly introduce yourself and explain what inspired you to start the campaign called Love is.
KM: I am a fourth year student in Economics at the University of Ottawa. I have been involved heavily through out my university experience in student life and student politics, which can be the most rewarding and most stressful thing a student can get themselves into. At a certain point, the environment of campus got a little negative in light of a series of events and I decided that maybe it’s time to introduce a positive campaign to combine my love for photography with putting a smile on people’s faces.
Your campaign involves asking people to define love. Let’s assume you are now in front of the camera lens and were asked to define love, what will your response be?
KM: This one is easy— Love is forgiveness. No matter what happens or how much someone hurts you, forgiveness is better than infinite anger because anger never inspires something positive.
Walk us through the process of capturing the right photo that accompanies everyone’s definition of love. In other words, what do you look for when capturing an individual’s image?
KM: The great thing about photography is having the power to capture the little things about someone that make them unique. Capturing the perfect shot is all about making your subject comfortable and at ease because it’s when you’re relaxed that your best features shine. I look for that little element that makes you- you. It’s not about the posing or the editing but about placing you at an angle that brings out the best!
You previously mentioned that photography is a passion of yours, do you mind discussing how you’ve been able to exude this passion?
KM: I have had the greatest support in what I do. I would not be where I am today without the consistent push and inspiration to strive for the best I can be. I have been able to explore my style through people who are willing to be in front of the camera and people to believe in me.
What is one thing you hope to accomplish with both photography and the Love is. Campaign?
KM: Photography for me is about making people feel good about themselves— I hope that with my photography itself and the Love Is. campaign to give individuals that little boost of self-confidence that is sometimes dormant or non-existent.
With regards to your campaign, what is the overall message you wish to leave everyone with?
KM: No matter what happens in your life, negative or positive, it is important to realize and acknowledge every positive thing around you— it can be by saying thank you, smiling a little more, or like Love Is., redefining a common word that you may have taken for granted.
For more information on the campaign, check out and like the Love is. Facebook page here.