Maxwell Hicks, Abilene resident, owner of Max’s Morphs and proponent for animal safety and preservation has honed his skills to begin local media label Max Productions.
Last semester, Hicks was interviewed due to his quick rise in the Abilene community and his vocal opinions and advice regarding the Rattlesnake Roundup in Sweetwater.
He advised anyone interested in attending to take the event’s proposed facts with a grain of salt, regarding many of them as untrue.
His day work includes working with Big Country Snake Removal, a company which relocates snake dens, and breeding snakes, reptiles and other creatures within his company, Max’s Morphs.
Through his work, he has hiked various areas around the world in search of new breeds of snakes, as well as diving into potentially dangerous situations.
Such dangerous situations include the removal of 45 rattlesnakes from an Abilene resident’s home, as reported by ABC News. Hicks would go on to film the removal, a video which then became viral.
Because of the success of this video and others, along with his skills, Hicks was influenced to expand into media.
Hicks has expanded on Max’s View, his YouTube channel and formed Max Productions with the intention to help people and their businesses through video.
Rather than focus on vlog-style cinematics, he now works on producing more sophisticated content such as the filming of commercials.
Because of his frequent appearances at reptile shows across the nation, Hicks has been approached about making commercials for the events and other companies like his.
One commercial in the works is one for the Houston Exotic Reptile and Pet Show or HERPS and will be broadcast on major cable networks such as History and Discovery channels as well as Animal Planet.
Hicks is also working with local companies in the Big Country, West Texas and the DFW area in the production of commercials with their businesses as well such as Mezamiz Deux Coffee House.
The hopeful videographer is particular in who he works with, giving his services to those who seem passionate or useful. “I don’t want to just give my services to anyone,” He said. “Though you have to start somewhere, I want to know I’m filming for someone who’s just as passionate as me or is offering a legit product or service.”
From expanding outside of YouTube to commercial work, Hicks now has the opportunity to grow further.
Cable television network A&E has reached out to him to discuss the possibility of creating a new VICE special or docuseries on herpetology.
With hours of footage and many interviews completed Hicks is producing a promo that will decide whether this happens.
If shown the green light, the special will highlight the passion people like Max Hicks show in this career field. He hopes this will eliminate false assumptions he believes many people have towards people devoted to herping.
Hicks believes many people have these assumptions due to a lack of knowledge or education on the subject. He often lives his life by the wisdom he’s heard or learned. One quote he lives by is,
“The opposite of fear is education. The more someone learns about something, the less they become threatened by it and the more they begin to love it.”
He said, “Many people hear stories of owners of 20-foot pythons living in the same house as their children, often being labeled as ‘freaks’. We hope that this series would take us out from under this sensationalism and shed a new light that will do wonders for our community.”
While this venture is both large and exciting for him, Hicks is keeping this open-ended like his other obligations, not limiting himself from other opportunities.
Regarding the possibility of making this his new career, he said, “God has got his own plan and that’s the way I’m going to go with.”
Even though this is his main project, Hicks still vlogs his ventures on trips as well as subjects he is passionate about, such as the Rattlesnake Roundup.
Hicks’ other ventures including the breeding and creation of new animal species, traveling to multiple parts of the country for reptile shows and the occasional comedy show at the Zone, a venue here in Abilene.
His company also works with local Abilene schools to educate kids about various snakes and reptiles, often eliciting excitement.
Regarding the schools’ and other people’s trust in him, sophomore environmental science major Ashley Williams said, “People take his word and are excited to learn from him because to see he takes to time to provide a genuine education as well as develop relationships with everyone he comes across.”