Leo Valenti

Bend.r is a physical vending machine turned queer creativity capsule.  Created by fine artist and illustrator Leo Valenti, Bend.r’s job is to celebrate LGBTQ+ art all in one place, be an extra way for artists to sell their work with no hassle, and allow for queer creatives to meet one another.


Hello! Welcome to Bend.r I am Leo, the founder and creator of this wonderful project and I will also be featuring some of my artwork in the machine in the form of prints and zines.

I am so proud to be a trans artist, I am inspired by queer love and self acceptance through tumultuous times. I want to showcase that no matter what you go through in life as a trans person you will always have a loving community behind you with the same experiences.

Bend.r came from my love of Japanese gashapon machines, I thought how cool would it be to create a mystery machine full of artwork. I bought the vending machine with some savings, cleaned, painted and decorated it with stickers bought from independent businesses and started recruiting for artists! 

We have artists of all mediums and there is no set brief, it is totally open! All of the artwork will be in mystery brown bags and tickets can be bought via the shop button in the top right of your screen. You will not know what you get until it comes which is all part of the fun but the tickets do correspond to a certain value inside of the bags, so rest assured you will never pay more or less than what the item inside is valued.

If you or someone you know is an LGBTQ+ artist and would like to be involved please send me an email over at meopeoleo@gmail.com

Chris Timmins is a trans poet + artist based in Glasgow. His work uses bold colour, glitter and a variety of artistic mediums - including collage, cyanotype and digital illustration - to explore queer identity in the 21st century. 

His biggest inspirations are Matisse, Keith Haring and Edwin Morgan. 

Outside of his creative practice, he enjoys growing strawberries and daydreaming about cowboys. 

You can find more of his work on instagram @plantbot/@plantbotart

'Hello! My name is Milo and I am a freelance film curator, writer and poet. My work centres around nature, relationships and living in a queer body, and I am particularly interested in how queerness can help us reconnect with the physical world.

My poetry has been featured in the Bristol Poetry Anthology and I have performed at Trans Pride Scotland, and my other writing has featured in Epigram and Bolivian Express. 

Through my work in film curation I try to explore how film can both construct and reflect identity, as well as questioning the power dynamics in those gatekeeping art. 

I have programmed for the Edinburgh International Film Festival, Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival and the Palace International FIlm Festival, as well as having helped to deliver the 2020 Palace Residency in Poland.

I am currently studying for a Masters Degree in Film Curation. I am a transmasculine non-binary person, and as part of the queer community I try to foreground queer joy in everything I do. I hope to start a trans film and arts festival in Glasgow in the near future. I'm excited to be a part of Bend.r, and I hope you enjoy my poetry!'

Vie Richards (he/they) is a queer digital illustrator, seamster, drag king, and comics artist studying at University of Edinburgh. 

When he’s not slowly making his way through drawing every member of the Edinburgh drag scene, he’s making portraits and comics inspired by his general love of shiny things, vampirism, and all things Gothic.

Crash King is an illustrator and zine maker based in Norwich, UK. 

Their practice focusses on celebrating queer identity, and exploring their own experiences as a trans person.

Their work can be found at @crashcantdraw on Instagram and Etsy

Madeleine Leisk [(she/her) YLWBK illustrations] is an Edinburgh-based Canadian illustrator, graphic designer and library assistant.

With a background in art history, her passion is queering art history and she also enjoys illustrating for her local queer community.

She works primarily in digital mediums, including vector illustrations for commercial projects.

When not doodling or shelving dusty books, Madeleine enjoys travelling and volunteering with the Edinburgh LGBT Health and Wellbeing events team.

You can find more of her work under the name YLWBK illustrations on Instagram (@ylwbkillustrations) and Etsy (YLWBK illustrations).


Sofftpunk is a small illustration online store based in Nottingham headed by 21 year old artist of colour; Hash, which centres long standing belief in community, revolution and minority perspectives.

To further foster unity throughout underrepresented groups, Sofftpunk makes political and personal art available as both functional and expressive decorative pieces.

This small store and business is run by Hash and their partner, Ish (22) , and all orders are lovingly processed and hand packaged by just them two in their home studio and office!

You can get involved with our community, see our work and support us here;


Twitter / IG / TikTok - @Sofftpunk

I'm Tee, 22, an analog film photographer from Devon UK.

'Fool me once, Fool me Twice' is a self-published A5 zine. A series of analog double exposures, creating an amalgam of two memories combined into one photograph becoming a way of exploring new community identity and personal experiences focusing around the theme of finding home. Showing—in essence—that home is wherever I am, and that it is not far behind. 
The photographs become a means of visual exploration, to make a seemingly fractured life into a whole: a story with a past, present, and future. The idea that ‘Home’ is not a place, but rather a state of mind.

Albie de Paz (he/him)

When I was little I wanted to be a priest and loved playing with my grandma’s makeup. To nobody’s surprise, I happened to take a degree in Theatre direction. But showbiz soon gave way to fine art and in the height of my twenties I co-founded one of the dopest (so we used to think) contemporary art collectives in the Madrid of the time.

One could think I was thriving but it was not the case and so I engaged in an as passionate as comical love-hate-pipping-hot-mess relationship with art herself. The outcome is that nowadays I quite happily live in a Welsh little town where I am a professional waiter by day and an dilettante illustrator by night.

I am inspired by queer culture, politics, art history, Spanish folk culture and traditions, religion, modern and contemporary literature and, of course, horror movies.

I am especially interested in the discussion and construction of healthy new masculinities.



Heather Hilditch (she/her) is a butch dyke artist and poet, currently based in west lothian.

a lot of the time, her creative work is all over the place, but broadly- she explores themes of nature, connection, memory, the body and her own identity.

she enjoys experimenting with different artistic mediums including digital illustration, collage, oil pastel and poetic form. her biggest inspirations are mary oliver, alison bechdel and tove janson.

outside of her artistic work, she enjoys eating a lot of bread, listening to phoebe bridgers, getting silly tattoos, being bald and purposely typing in lower-case.

you can find more of her work on instagram @begonebehome

Gemma Jackson

I'm a queer photographer residing in Ayrshire with my wife and little pup Theo. I have a passion for travel (especially around Scotland) and documenting this as much as possible.

I love printing my work, and do so sustainably (including the papers and inks used for prints).

Instagram: @GemmaJacksonPhoto

Website: TBC (still under construction atm!)

Lyall Tighe is a 22-year-old queer student living in Glasgow who loves painting, crafting and especially jewellery-making.

They make lots of different fun styles of earrings in hand-painted Fimo or resin and occasionally do some little upcycling projects, they are also open to making custom designs and would love to hear your ideas. 

Outside of arty projects, they love their plant collection and cooking vegan food for their partner. 

Their work can be found at @madcap.jewels on Instagram and Etsy

Rosie Hawtin (she/her) is an illustrator, designer, maker and weirdo who has been living and working in Edinburgh since 2014. 

She loves to make art with a mythological and ethereal feel, which explores ideas of femininity, queer identity and the psyche. 

Her work tends to focus on imagery around anatomy, nature, and the figure, imbued with either feelings of fun dreamlike escapism, or direct emotional intensity.

She enjoys working in all sorts of mediums, with a balance of organic pencil and printmaking textures, and a playful and exploratory approach to colour.

She is open to both professional and personal commissions, and if you have a project enquiry, please submit it via the commissions page on her website. She makes prints, cards, stickers, and zines of her work, which you can find on her Etsy shop, and also has a digital art book available for purchase online, called Alexandra Amalie, which was made in collaboration with Woo Yoon.

If you like her art, please consider commissioning her, purchasing something from her, or donating to her on Ko-fi so she can continue to make it!

Instagram: @heyits_rosie

Everything else: www.heyitsrosie.co.uk/links

Caits (she/her)


Caits is a visual artist and tattoo apprentice from Leith.

Her illustrations are striking, bold and colourful, and are often inspired by queer icons and LGBT+ history around the world.

She loves all things retro and tacky - think holidays in Blackpool, 90’s cartoons, arcade machines and weird forgotten pop culture.

She is a drag king, and has been performing across Edinburgh for 7 years as Phil Herrin. 

Caits works as a freelance artist supporting young people and communities, and has recently collaborated with LGBT Youth Scotland on their first ever Pride merch, launching summer 2021.

She is also a resident artist with art for sale at Edinburgh’s first sober queer cafe, Greenwood.

You can find more of her work here: @C8S_ART on Instagram. 

Max/Sweety is a trans (iel/they) painter, larper, actor, drag artist and writer from the south of France.

They have -among other subjects- art and cinema before turning towards rhetorics applied to politics.

Their medium of choice is watercolor but they also like to explore digital art, ink, pencils, oils.

Their art and writings are mainly inspired by nature, human bodies, their experience as a queer person and death -they are involved in the death positive movement.

Their main interests are in how stories and art shape our identity and view of the world; and in how to mix several mediums -illustration, animation, theatre, writing- together, and tell stories with them. 

Clemency she/they

Hey, my name is Clemency and I’m an Art Therapist and Printmaker in Sydney, Australia.

As an Art Therapist I get to travel across Sydney and beyond in my little station wagon mobile art studio. Working with diverse communities of varying backgrounds, generations, cultures, queer identities, abilities and experiences.

I love hearing people’s journeys of home and identity. In my own art making practice, I use printmaking processes to bring my inner landscape to life. I tend to use a mix of Australian nature motifs from my bush upbringing, queer colour aesthetic and dark humour from my city community, and design application from my print-media training.

I’m curious to see what it feels like to send off little windows to my life, across the world. I invite anyone to share their windows with me too. Especially while we’re separated by rona. Words, stories, images, song, anything.

IG: @looking_at_marks clemencyarttherapy.com

Love from inner west Sydney (the queer artsy bit aye).xoxo

Acknowledging the Gadigal and Wangal people of the Eora Nation, Traditional Custodians of the land I live and work on. Acknowledging the Bundjalung people, Traditional Custodians of the land I grew up on. Paying my respects to the Elders past, present and emerging. Extending that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people reading this. Sovereignty was never ceded. Always was, always will be, Aboriginal land.

Ellen Blair is a photographer and printmaker from Belfast, Northern Ireland.

She loves to deconstruct photographs she has taken and repurpose them as handmade prints. 

She feels like she gets to know herself and her surroundings through her work, exploring themes such as queer joy, community and mental health.

Her work can be found at @ellenblairphoto on instagram and her most recent digital project can be found atellenblairspectrum.com

River Ellen MacAskill is a writer from the north of Scotland based in Glasgow. 

They co-founded the Writers 4 Utopia queer sci-fi collective; wrote ‘A9’, a coming-of-age novella included in Hometown Tales: Highlands & Hebrides (W&N, 2018); and have self-published work including the ongoing Slow Down per-zine series and the lesbian road trip novel Coasting (2021). 

They have facilitated writing workshops and ran the open mic for queer writers, Read For Your Life. Their poetry pamphlet Virility at Home was recently published by Death of Workers While Building Skyscrapers.

You can find their work here-



Eli is a 20 years old queer Canadian artist living in Edinburgh. They’ve always loved making art but only realised during the pandemic that it was meant to be more than just for fun! 

They started their small business called Quirky Queer Co in August 2020 and it’s been slowing growing since. They make all kinds of funky handmade jewellery items such as earrings, necklaces, bracelets, key chains & more.

They’re also an illustrator and make stickers in their home studio as well as some cute prints!

You can reach them on Instagram and Tiktok under @quirky.queer.co. 

Find their Etsy shop here! https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/QuirkyQueerCo

Hi! My name is Emma, aka Gizma.jpg on insta. I'm a 32yr old self taught mixed media artist living in West Yorkshire, UK.

I love to experiment with new materials and mediums, seeing how they interact with each other. A lot of my style is from many "happy little accidents" that I incorporated in.

I get a lot of inspiration from books, movies, games, as well as my love of history, mythology and the occult.

I love doing commissions and art challenges cause they give me whole other avenues to explore.

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