Housed in a former Victorian school building in Westbury, Wiltshire, we met with Trevor Pictor, who has been at the helm of White Horse Pottery for over 20 years.
How did you get started and learn to make pottery?
I have always enjoyed making things with my hands and when I was 30, I decided I wanted to change careers from being office-based to workshop based. So, I changed jobs and learnt to make pots here at White Horse Pottery under Stephen Humm, who had the pottery before me and is also a good friend. 25 years later here I am. I took over the business 20 years ago and it was a very steep learning curve.
What projects have you most enjoyed making?
I just love making pots. I enjoy technical challenges, making large pots and firing them, but all of my work is a joy! When I see people pick up my pots and look at them with a smile on their face, that gives me joy. My favourite pot to make is a jug. I just find them a very complete shape and very pleasing to put together.
What do you strive for your finished pots to express?
Themselves! I want them to shout, “Here I am, pick me up, use me!” I always strive to achieve pots that are traditional in shape, functional and capture beauty.
What makes White Horse Pottery unique?
Is any pottery unique? Pottery has been made for thousands of years. I love the fact that it’s mentioned in the Bible, that’s how old it is! So, I’m not sure you can say that we’re unique. However, at White Horse Pottery, we do use a very beautiful glaze which works in all three colours. This glaze, which has been with the pottery forever, is timeless and I guess that is what makes it work so well on our pots.
Do you have any tips for anyone wanting to learn pottery?
Just get going! Get on a pottery course and get alongside a potter who makes a living from it. You will see how tough it is, but you will quickly learn what you need to do. Be sure to practice and look at pieces made by others to understand their form and shape. But remember, don’t forget to smile and enjoy what you do!