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the Soul Cages

By MichaelBilottaPhotography    
Inspired by the song by Sting, it is mainly the personal stuff behind the motivation in the first place that brings up imagery from the past and makes it meaningful to me. We all find meaning in lyrics and poetry as it relates to our personal experiences, and we add or blend the author's personal intent with our own. Lately, the metaphor of the Soul Cage, the family, the past, has meaning to me again, and so it needed to manifest into something. A full blog post about this image and the meaning behind it is available on my website at:

[Link removed by ePz - please see T&Cs]
and a before and after editing version can be seen at:

[Link removed by ePz]
Sting's lyrics:

"The Soul Cages"

The boy child is locked in the fisherman's yard
There's a bloodless moon where the ocean died
A shoal of nightstars hang fire in the nets
And the chaos of cages where the crayfish lie

Where is the fisherman, where is the goat?
Where is the keeper in his carrion coat?
Eclipse on the moon when the dark bird flies
Where is the child with his father's eyes?

There are the soul cages
These are the soul cages

He's the king of the ninth world
The twisted son of the fog bells toll
In each and every lobster cage
A tortured human soul

These are the souls of broken factories
The subject slaves of the broken crown
The dead accounting of old guilty promises
These are the souls of the broken town

These are the soul cages
These are the soul cages
These are the soul cages
These are the soul cages

'I have a wager' the brave child spoke
The fisherman laughed, though disturbed at the joke
'You will drink what I drink but you must equal me
And if the drink leaves me standing,
A soul shall go free'

'I have here a cask of most magical wine
A vintage that blessed every ship in the line
It's wrung from the blood of the sailor's who died
Young white bodies adrift in the tide'

'And what's in it for me my pretty young thing?
Why should I whistle, when the caged bird sings?
If you lose a wager with the king of the sea
You'll spend the rest of forever in the cage with me'

These are the soul cages
These are the soul cages
These are the soul cages
These are the soul cages

A body lies open in the fisherman's yard
Like the side of a ship where the iceberg rips
One less soul in the soul cages
One last curse on the fisherman's lips

These are the soul cages
These are the soul cages
These are the soul cages
These are the soul cages

Swim to the light Swim to the light

He dreamed of the ship on the sea
It would carry his father and he
To a place they could never be found
To a place far away from this town
A Newcastle ship without coals
They would sail to the island of souls

model: Mike Ryan

Tags: Digitally manipulated Digital art Portraits and people Nude and glamour

Voters: Philip_H, User_Removed, philhomer and 23 more

Editors' choice awards are given by the team to outstanding images.

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philhomer Plus
11 88 32 England
29 Jul 2013 7:37PM
how do people do this?
how do people do what?
NDODS 10 5.2k 127 United Kingdom
29 Jul 2013 7:56PM
A classic slice of Sting, and a very good photographic interpretation Michael.

Regards NathanGrinGrinGrin
Thanks Nathan! I loved that album!
DeSilver Plus
13 14 12 England
30 Jul 2013 9:02AM
Inspiring stuff. Smile

Even if one tries to reach the level of skill that it takes to reach this standard and fails 'You have tried'

bluesandtwos 11 521 1 England
30 Jul 2013 9:25AM
The image, once again, so very good, but at the risk of repeating myself it's the reasoning behind the making of the image that makes it much more than just the image.

Quote 'how do people do this?' I would think that's refering both to the imagination and the skills required to format that mental image into something for us all to share. I too often wonder how do you do it as well as you do, not just once or twice, but time and time again.

Fantastic image & great inspirational music
Diggeo 8 13 Greece
31 Jul 2013 4:24PM
Nice image and title. Like it!

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