Why burn a lot of brain power trying to come up with your own pizza box design if you don’t have the talent for it? At Slice Pizza & Beer in Laguna Beach, California, owners Suzanne and Cary Redfearn let local artists do all the work.

Slice Pizza & Beer has released a total of six artist-designed pizza boxes, all of which serve as collectible keepsakes for the pizzeria’s customers as well as the artists’ fans. The latest one, designed by James Strombotne, debuted last week and will be offered for carryout and delivery orders for most of 2024.

Collectible art was part of the marketing plan for Slice Pizza & Beer from the start. “In keeping with the concept of promoting community, we decided, when we opened, to have local artists design our boxes,” Suzanne Redfearn told the Laguna Beach Independent.

The pizzeria launched in October 2017 and has featured pizza boxes from five other local artists: Cindy Fletcher, Sharon Hardy, Lisa Mansour, Lauren Howell and Larry Stewart.

James Strombotne created this original artwork for the latest collectible pizza box offered by Slice Pizza & Beer. (Slice Pizza & Beer)

For 2024, Strombotne’s box depicts a cyclist performing a classic biking trick, with a ponytail and long cloak billowing behind them. Strombotne chose an Einstein quote for the box’s flap: “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”

Stewart’s box, released in November 2022, bordered on the surreal, showcasing a mysterious horned figure with large square eyes peering out beneath a classic movie theater marquee sign advertising a film titled “Stay Positive.” The flap quotes a classic song by The Beatles: “And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.”

That box replaced one designed by Laguna Beach interior designer Lauren Howell in January 2022. Howell’s contribution portrayed a regal female figure at a bar bidding customers to “pull up a chair” and represents the homey spirit of local independent pizzerias with words like “stories,” “community” and “the good things.”

Howell’s chosen quote came from Maya Angelou: “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” As Howell told the Laguna Beach Independent, “I tried to capture a feeling, when I did the artwork, that we’re all in the community and pull up a chair.”