I am an all-rounder nature photographer, but devote most of my time to landscapes, macro and more artistic approach. For the yearly rutting season of red deer, I make an exception. I don't photograph deer the whole day, every day, but only in an atmospheric light. I really like the early morning ambiance with some fog. To photograph red deer I go to the Weerterforest, a small nature reserve close to my home.
I always aim to be in the forest 30 to 60 minutes before sunrise, to locate the animals. There is an open space where all the rutting activities take place. Most opportunities are thus there. I located this deer at the edge of the field, standing alone in the beautiful morning light. The biggest challenge was to get a clear view of that deer. It was a narrow view angle, but wide enough for this image.
Despite that I like the colours of the early morning light, I converted the image to black and white in Photoshop. Without colour, it's all about light and form and this particular deer has that necessary strong shape. The layers of fog and lines of grasses helped to create the depth.