I recently stumbled across a remarkable artist named Tom Thomson (August 5, 1877 – July 8, 1917). He was a Canadian artist whose work influenced a group of landscape painters known as the Group of Seven. Thomson passed away before the Group was officially formed, however he is sometimes incorrectly included in the Group.
Thomson started drawing and painting at an early age, but only started taking painting seriously once he was in his 30s. He was largely self-taught but developed skills through his work as a graphic designer.
His style is similar to that of Vincent van Gogh and Paul Cezanne, with expressive brushwork and use of color.
As he was largely self-taught, he seemed to paint without the limitations of conventional wisdom. One of the benefits of being a self-taught artist is that you can learn techniques and methods and apply them in your own way. When you are taught under a system, you will inevitably adopt the practices of your teachers to some extent.
It is the way Thomson used color which fascinates me the most. All his paintings have a wonderful harmony and demonstrate very interesting color combinations. He also seemed to enjoy painting challenging subjects such as the Northern Lights or cluttered treescapes.
My favorite painting is Maple Saplings, which demonstrates a stunning contrast between muted background colors and vibrant yellows and oranges in the foreground.
Anyway, I will let you enjoy the rest of his paintings. Unfortunately, I was only able to locate photos of a handful of his paintings.
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