Photographic Portals Assignment Winner Sandra Rust

Congratulations to Sandra Rust for winning the recent Photographic Portals assignment with the image, “Buck Breath.” See more of Rust’s photography at

View the winning image and a selection of submissions in the gallery below. And be sure to check out our current photography assignment here and enter your best shots!

Winner: "Buck Breath" By Sandra Rust


"I was out early that morning looking for the white-tailed deer," says Rust. "The day before, I saw the herd playing chase with each other. To this day, I would have to say that it was one of my most amazing moments in nature. I was so excited watching them frolic in the forest the day before that I wanted to get up early the next morning to see if the deer were out.

"A cold front moved in overnight, and it was so chilly that I could see my breath when I exhaled. I then noticed the majestic light and sun rays in the forest, which had an angel dust sparkle to it.

"I saw a deer over by the oak tree, and he was just looking at me, so peacefully, watching my every move as I got in a little closer. And, in that moment, I captured 'Buck Breath'."