My Lighthouse Arts residency occurred at a pivotal moment for me and helped me fly though my greatest challenge for the year. In the course of studying a Diploma of Visual Arts at the Newcastle Art School, I was tasked with producing an architectural painting of a recognisable Newcastle building. As an abstract artist, this first attempt at figurative representation was an enormous challenge for me. Over six consecutive weeks, the presence of the lighthouse and the other artists in residence progressively calmed my fears and allowed me time to sketch and re-sketch. Between residency days, I quietly painted my way into a new genre and am pretty chuffed with the outcome. It was an empowering experience and I feel an enduring kinship with the lighthouse buildings. An additional bonus has been subsequently bumping into three of the residency cohort in Newcastle, at the Hornsby Art Prize and the National Gallery in Canberra. I am so grateful for the opportunity to complete a Lighthouse Arts residency and heartily recommend it to other artists.