It all started a couple of years ago…

During my first few outings with a drone something happened as I was hovering above the waves. I saw more than just a shoreline, more than just water and waves, surf and sand, rocks and rips. I saw an image staring back at me, one I couldn’t have possibly imagined. As clear as day I could see a turtle fleeing in terror from the fangs of a sea snake. Except it wasn’t, it was just the waves crashing down on the shore. Yet, in my mind’s eye it was so much more. I knew I had to capture it, so without a moment’s hesitation, I did. For a split second the apparition froze on my controller screen, then disappeared, vanishing as fast as it had appeared.

Back at home that evening I began processing the images from the day’s adventures. I must admit, the initial feeling of adulation emanated from not having crashed the drone rather than what I may have captured with it. But that was soon to change. As I downloaded the images, sorting through the day’s catch there it was. In an instant I was taken back to earlier that day when I gazed upon Mother Nature’s artistry. Inhaling sharply I knew there was no stopping it now, I was addicted, I craved for more.

Whilst there is generic word for the phenomenon, Pareidolia, it’s more generally associated with seeing patterns in the clouds. I didn’t feel it suited the specific nature of my discovery so I crafted a word of my own.

It is a combination of two words of Latin origin. Surgo meaning grow, lift, rise (and also a possible origin of the word surf) and Imago meaning likeness, image, appearance and also echo, idea, ghost and phantom. Surgimago (pronounced surj-ee-ma-jo) was born.