For years, I've repurposed old, metal lunchboxes. A Rambo lunchbox became a lunchbox dedicated to Great Women of Literature. Another honored Great Writers of the South. More recently, I've dedicated a lunchbox to The Donner Party. For a long time, though, I've had it in my head to create the ultimate Superhero Lunchbox...not a lunchbox featuring Batman or Wonder Woman, but a box honoring my real-life heroes.

I posed this challenge to a wide circle of friends: get your hands on a metal lunchbox, and put some thought into who or what your heroes are, and why. And then get to work making the Superhero Lunchbox of your dreams.

This online exhibit is the result of that challenge. I hope visitors to this site will find it fun and interesting, and maybe even inspiring. Lunchboxes are such useful things, and so many of us have fond memories of toting tuna sandwiches to school in our Partridge Family or Six Million Dollar Man lunchboxes. There seems to me to be no reason for us to outgrow this tradition of toting around our meals in metal boxes that say something about who we are, what we like, and what our values are. I know I've never outgrown it.

Start here, because it's what started it all for me, and work your way up. Enjoy. Leave some feedback. Make a lunchbox.

For a more detailed view, click on the individual images.

If you're moved to make a lunchbox of your own, and have it included in this exhibit, submissions are welcome. Get your hands on a metal lunchbox (no plastic, please) - you can buy a blank one from or repurpose an old one. Go to town. Choose your superhero, and and run with it. Photograph your finished lunchbox, write a few words about your subject, and send the photos and text to me at, with the words "Superhero Lunchbox" in the subject box.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Cappy Sue

When my shared this project it sounded like a ball.  Doing a group project is not something I get to do a lot of and what a neat topic: super heros.  My biggest problem when I sat down to work on this was that so many different people and animals come to mind. For me what makes a super hero is not the ability to save people or fly but the ability to inspire other people in a positive way.  The positive way might not always be what is intended but that is just what I grabbed on to in people so I went with that.

One side has photos of my grandmother and a label for the book portable curmudgeon.  The reason is she was a curmudgeon. She was fantastic and inspiring had a will of iron.  She was the type of woman who grew her own roses and asked for a shotgun for her 80th birthday.  To me, she was a shining example of not letting others chose who you should be.

The flip side is a photo of Jean Harlow. In a whole different way I find her ability to be comfortable in her skin and embrace her bombshell self and get things done very inspiring.

The rest of my lunchbox is pretty much covered in photos of animals because they have a kindness and honesty it is rare to see in people.

Anyhow that is my wide and weird world of heroes.  Oh just for a weird note I filled the inside of the box with bits of paper I found inspiring. Things like a lost mothers day card a small boy had written for his mother that I found in a book I bought.  Another is cards from people who had sent little bits of money to help with a loved one's funeral. In my book, just less well known - but still inspiring - heroes.


  1. I really love your lunchbox. The idea is so great, particularly the "love notes," inside--because they have inspiration, good juju. Plus, it's just pretty!!

  2. Cappy - your idea of putting stuff inside reminds me of the Southern (I think specific to new Orleans, actually) tradition of Ya Ya Boxes: the outside of a person's ya ya box represents what they show ot the world, the inside is a painting of what they're like inside, not necessarily visible to the world. The outside is their body, in a way...the inside is their soul.

  3. Great lunchbox! I love that you went "three dimensional" and added objects to the box itself. Great job!