Seattle Times reader Tom Overlin’s photo of the smoky Seattle cityscape after the July 4 fireworks over Lake Union.

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Photographer: Tom Overlin

Photo taken: July Fourth, from Seattle’s University District

Photographer’s description: “Aftermath. After the fireworks show on Lake Union, I stayed to capture the boats moving through the Montlake Cut and the smoky haze moving into Seattle.”

Katie’s critique: “This wasn’t the fireworks photo I was expecting to be submitted this week and I think that’s why I like it so much. The hazy aftermath from the big Lake Union fireworks show creates a different look to the city. The 15-second exposure creates a glow I really like from so many sources, and the fireworks captured at the bottom of the frame, due to the long exposure, add some context and a burst of fun. This cityscape long exposure is technically well done and an overall excellent photo.”

JULY PHOTO CONTEST ‘Take a hike’

For this month’s reader-photo contest, we’re looking for your favorite photo from an early-summer trek around the Northwest, whether it’s among balsamroot flowers in the Methow Valley or through lingering snow at an alpine lake.

Send us your best recent “Take a hike” photo, and we’ll choose a favorite to spotlight in The Seattle Times’ Reader’s Lens feature. A Canon photo bag goes to the winning photographer. Submit by the end of the day Sunday, July 30, to seattletimes.com/submit-photos.

Share your recent photo from around the Northwest. Submit online at seattletimes.com/submit-photos (and see an online gallery of other Reader’s Lens photos). We judge the year’s best and award prizes every December.