I have lived and work in a 3d world for a very long time and looking at side scans came quite naturally to me, but conveying what you are actually seeing has been a challenge to my friends and clients. When I tell someone to "look for the shadows",or "follow the shadows back toward the boat", they often look a bit puzzled.
This image does a really great job of it with a subject everyone can relate to. Read the text, this image was taken directly above the camels. You are just seeing the shadows of the camels in black.
Hope it helps a bit, Phill Pittman