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What's Wrong with this Picture?

Pest Control Technology - Feb 1999
Feb 99 Cover of PCT Magazine
Cover - full size
Now I don't know about you, but the first time I saw this cover, what I saw was some old guy signing up or signing off for something.  The salesman (or serviceman, we don't know which) doesn't look THAT happy, so unless he's just containing himself, he's probably a serviceman. Which leads me to ask where his uniform is? That shirt doesn't look like a "uniform-type" shirt to me. It should have at least two things:  The name of his company, and the serviceman's name. I mean, if the company can afford the portable computer terminal they are using, why not a proper uniform?

Actually, the whole thing is surely posed.  The old guy looks like he's up from the print department, the other guy holding the computer must be from the art department.  But it certainly looks real enough.

Call me petty.  Throw in skeptic and cynic.  But I think I would rather see bugs!  You know, maybe a different one each month - sort of, like, All Bugs, All the Time.  You never run out of material, either.  Then the covers don't look too silly years later. Dexter Sear, at Insects Org has the right idea.  And he does all that for free!

I say, do the cover the right way, maybe spend a little time or money making the cover distinctive, look something like (maybe) the old Scientific American covers.  Use a little something called class.  Maybe then it would even become a collector's item.

But what do we know?  Dexter and I, we're just bums.

Please, no flames.  I'm an old guy myself, used to be a printer, but was never in the art dept.  And I'm also not commenting on the content of these mags either, but maybe I will later on.  Most of the time I like to criticize, but that's only because it's sometimes hard to congratulate this industry.  Believe me, I congratulate whenever I can.

Speaking of Scientific American, even they can look pretty silly years later.  Take a look at the color advertisement (the only color in the whole issue) on the back cover page of my very first May, 1932 issue of Scientific American.

Scientific American advertisement, back cover, May 1932 issue

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