“Eagle’s Nest,” by Josh Adam, oil, 30 x 40 in.

Josh Adam had permission to paint on a cattle ranch in Humboldt County, California, but he still felt like he was trespassing. Why?

“This painting was done on a large 50,000-acre cattle ranch,” Adam says. “Our property abutted it, and from our house to this spot was about a half hour walk through three locked gates. I couldn’t really see much of it, but there was enough coming and going from this large fir tree to confirm the existence of a golden eagle nest.

“Golden eagles are rare and prefer large wild tracts like this ranch, and I could tell my presence standing on this dirt road was a concern to them … which made me feel bad. I don’t like the idea of photo-safaris in Africa because it stresses the animals out, and I felt this was similar to some degree. The best I could do was to be silent and not bring my dog. In the end they seemed to not care so much.”

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