Tom Thomson

Tom Thomson as an adult

Our Namesake

Tom Thomson is a well known Canadian landscape artist. He was born near Claremont, Ontario on August 5, 1877. Shortly thereafter his family moved to the Owen Sound area. Thomson and his 9 siblings grew up on a farm near the shores of Georgian Bay. As a young man, he enjoyed music, sports, swimming, fishing, and hunting. Tom Thomson first tried becoming a machinist. Then he briefly attended a business school before accepting a job as a commercial artist. Thomson would often head North to sketch nature scenes at the Mississagi Forest Reserve (in Sudbury) and Algonquin Park. As an artist, Thomson used ink, watercolours, coloured chalk and oil paints. He was described as a quiet, humble man with a sense of humour who was often too shy to share his art. Tom Thomson enjoyed heading out on wilderness treks with fellow artists. He would sketch in his canoe, sitting on a log or a rock. With encouragement from other artists, he shared his work and learned from others. Tom Thomson later worked as a nature guide, a Fire Ranger and was an expert canoeist and woodsman. He drowned in Canoe Lake, under suspicious circumstances, in July of 1917, just before his 40th birthday. Since then, he has earned global recognition for his artwork. As students, we can learn from Tom Thomson's example. He tried various careers before finding his passion. He also developed his artistic ability through the collaboration with others. For more information, visit

Tom Thomson close up head shot

Our History

Tom Thomson Public School was built in 1970 with an open-concept style. It was constructed beside Rambo Creek which separates Optimist Park from the large green space enjoyed by our students. Our school population has changed over time however on average we have approximately 400 students.

Visit: for more information and Tom Thomson's paintings.

Spring Ice Painting by Tom Thomson
Hillside Smoke Lake by Tom Thomson Painter