Photographer: Shun Takano, Renton

Photo taken: Aug. 9, Gene Coulon Memorial Park, Renton

Photographer’s description: “Went for a morning walk and found a flock of swallows on a railing. Was able to get shots from different angles, but the ‘head-on’ shot ended up being the most intriguing to me. Taken with Sony A99 with Sony 70-400 mm lens.”

Expert says: “I have a confession to make; please don’t judge me … I’m terrified of birds. Yes, cringe, try-to-get-away-from-the-flying-animal-that-will-eat-my-face terrified. We get a lot of really great photos of birds submitted. Nine Reader’s Lens selections so far this year feature a bird in the photo. Most have given me that feeling of terror in some degree — except this one. Look at the face on that bird! Hilarious! I love how the depth of field cleans up the background and the green pops to make that front bird stand out. I might crop slightly from the left and top to create more of a rule-of-thirds. Kudos to the photographer for not making me cringe!”

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— Katie Greene, Seattle Times photo staff

Share your recent photo from around the Northwest. Submit online at (and see an online gallery of other Reader’s Lens photos). We judge the best and award a prize every December.