Magnifying glass, book, and map

Tom Thomson Thursday!


Welcome to Tom Thomson Thursday!  

Note to parents: these activities include an investigative exploration of the mysterious death of Tom Thompson and are intended for an audience mature enough to handle that content. Younger audiences can enjoy the activity provided by the McMichael Canadian Art Collection and the picture books mentioned at the end.

Who is Tom Thomson?  

Tom Thompson is an iconic Canadian artist closely associated with the famous Canadian artists called the Group of Seven. Tom is famous for his artwork, but also for his mysterious death. Today’s adventure involves an exploration of Tom, his art, his method, and for the curious, his mystery.

For starters, let’s learn a little more about who Tom Thomson was and what kind of art he created. Check out the following pages at the National Gallery of Canada , the Art Canada Institute, and the McMichael Canadian Art Collection.

What Method Did he Use?

Tom Thomson had an interesting way of painting. He would travel into the woods, collect sketches of things he saw and appreciated, and paint larger versions when he returned to his studio. The McMichael website offers an Artventure that will walk you through this process. Take a look!

What Happened Next?

Tom Thompson's life and death are surrounded by mystery. Get your detective hat on and begin exploring with Canadian Mysteries and Mystery Quests.

Story Time!

Although Tom Thomson and his friends eventually became national icons, their work was not initially well-received by critics and peers. Get inspired by these animated stories about other artists who struggled to get started:
Ish by Peter Reynolds
Snap! by Hazel Hutchins
Dot by Peter Reynolds


Want more? See themed days by our staff on our Daily Adventures page.