natalie kucken


photographs + watercolors I painted when I was fourteen years old.

Styled by Jaclyn Bethany
Hair and makeup by Caroline Baribeau
Model is Kat O'Brien at Wilhelmina

diary 18 (december 13)

Fell back into the habit of not knowing what to do with my free afternoons and not being able to get out the front door. I don't understand the tendency for seclusion I had picked up and I don't know what I should do with it. Kept having reoccurring nightmares where someone I haven't seen for a long time has red all up and down their arms. I got a tattoo I've wanted since I was 14 in the same spot. Would only be able to fall asleep during the early evening in my upper living room after not sleeping all night in my bed. The camera I bring out with me broke so I've spent a long time not having the machine that helps keep me sane. I found out that without my camera always with me I feel exactly the same, I didn't wish I had it nearly as much as I was anticipating and I didn't secretly love its absence because it's heavy and I often miss real life things because I'm photographing them. Found out that I still miss the moments because I decide to watch them and take mental pictures instead of participate. Went to my friend's birthday party in Harlem and started singing until everyone else did too, my friend's music show on 11th street and sat quietly backstage with my hood up. Walked from east village to the west water of manhattan and ended up at a show with peeling walls painted with clouds. Would leave my cafe almost every evening to walk and meet up with different friends in different places and venues. I had no business meetings and hardly answered my email, would walk down flushing avenue in the afternoon light with my rocawear coat on. Crossed the street purposefully at night to walk though the christmas tree sale paths with boom box music and strung up ornaments over the sidewalk. Sang someone Monster to sleep and wished that feelings were only ever felt when they were reciprocated. It's not the fire that kills you it's the smoke it's not the snow that ruins your shoes it's the salt it's not your sadness that makes you tired it's the lack of any sort of feeling at all. I overheard a conversation about rain watering flowers and a boy late at night who i handed flowers I was carrying said "Now I know how girls feel carrying flowers, it makes you feel mad helpless". The exterminator liked the snowflakes on my apartment ceiling. Felt as I was leaving New York this year that I wasn't going home but leaving my home to visit family and friends. All the seams of my fur coat ripped and I kept dropping things from my pockets in Pittsburgh in a daze, thought too much on the red eye buses. My father talked about how my mother died two days before his birthday and twelve before Christmas and how Decembers were no good and I agreed quietly. There was an ice storm in Michigan when I was there and I got lost in the woods everything was otherworldly. I slept through Christmas morning on the living room couch as my new little brother and sisters screamed around me. I drove all day from Washington DC to Atlanta with my favorite people to stay with 40 people from for a week. Slept on the floor and in piles and lost my voice, was handed a vitamin c tablet every morning. Explored abandoned homes during the day and ran between the groups of people in the big house we all stayed at late into the night. The last day of 2013 was my most favorite last day of any year, I kept kissing everyone with my teeth and screaming.