A Saskatchewan beadworker got an exciting opportunity to showcase her artwork.
Christine Tournier was asked by good friends to make a beaded medallion as a gift. She knew it was for someone big, and it turned out to be famous actor Jason Momoa, known for his role as Aquaman, among others.
Tournier is from St, Louis, a community in Saskatchewan founded by Métis people. She started her art-to-wear business SS River Designs to showcase her French and Métis culture.
She aspires to connect people to art, culture and heritage through fashion.
Tournier's friends had a chance to meet Momoa through a TV show called See. Her friend Clint Rudderham, who is partially blind, was chosen to act on the show in Toronto.
Clint's wife Colleen Rudderham saw it as an opportunity to gift Momoa with something unique that would represent her Indigenous culture. She asked Tournier to make a custom beaded medallion.
The three of them came up with a design that would represent Indigenous cultures and even showcase Hawaii, where Momoa comes from.
"The turtle is part of Indigenous teachings about the land and earth, and there's an eagle, a teepee," Tournier said. "Then there was a flower native to Hawaii and a rainbow."
The beaded medallion took Tournier several days to complete, but she was happy with the result.
She was particularly excited to make something for Momoa, because not only did the TV show — which is about a future where everyone is blind — hire partially blind or blind actors, but it worked with blind consultants, a move she found meaningful.
Not only were her friends allowed to gift the medallion to Momoa in person, but they let Tournier know how happy the Hollywood star was to receive it.