The Evolution of an Artist

Allen Morris-Smith (aka Skvwalker, “Sky” for short) was born and raised in North Philadelphia. He fell in love with art when he was a young child, and attended the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts where he majored in Visual Art. 

For college, he chose to remain in Philadelphia and enrolled at Drexel University where he began studying Computer Science. It was not long before he realized he wanted to embark on a more creative path. He switched his major to entertainment and arts management (with a focus on digital media management and graphic design) at Drexel’s Westphal College of Media Art and Design. 

It was at this time, that Sky became interested in Cryptography; he began devising ciphers with his friend Daveik (aka “Isnotcynical”), mapping notes to letters in the composition of  music, which led to a more serious pursuit of  the craft of music-making and the creation of original, thought-provoking projects that combined music composition, film and animation.

Daveik (left) and Sky (right)

In 2018, he formed an artist collective, VodHavok, and produced his first mix tape, System Overload. Working with the collective in the creation of System Overload showed Sky the trans-formative power of collaboration and its unlimited creative potential. 

A three-month trip to Los Angeles followed, giving Sky an opportunity to meet and network with creatives outside the music industry. He worked with filmmakers and social influencers to produce a Pokemon YouTube short that inspired him to bring more visual aesthetics to his Skvwalker persona.  

It was in L.A. that Sky met Jordan Francis, who become both a friend and collaborator. Together, they began developing ideas for short films and skits and uploaded their first video, Goku v Uub, to their YouTube channel, Epitome Pictures. Upon returning to Philadelphia, Sky solidified his partnership with Jordan and they created a series of short music videos called Freestyle Fridays for VodHavok. Since then, VodHavok has grown into a full production studio (VodHavok Studios LLC) that works with videographers, photographers, fashion designers and other creatives who share Sky’s passion and dedication to producing quality art, expressed through the media of music, fashion, graphic design and film making.  

Jordan Francis

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a challenge for Sky, as it has been for everyone in the music and entertainment industry. Social distancing has resulted in the cancellation of video shoots, performances and other large events. One positive outcome of the pandemic is the increased awareness of the challenges that early-stage entrepreneurs face. Large, more-established, companies are coming together to support start-ups like VodHavok. For his summer Co Op experience at Drexel, Sky is currently incubating his company at the Baiada Institute where he receives mentoring and support, access to professionals, networking opportunities, and funds to finance the growth of his business.  

What does the future hold for Sky and VodHavok? Sky intends to continue his artistic journey as a Creative Director, Rapper, and Animator in the entertainment industry and in the field of music. On the horizon, is the roll-out of his LP, Broke Music and Broke Music in Surround Sound with BrandNameRecords. In addition to the production of original content, VodHavok Studios will continue to provide creative services to other’s looking to collaborate. 

According to Sky, “An entrepreneur is simply someone with a business idea. Anyone can say they are an entrepreneur. However, those who take the journey and see their ideas through, earn the merit of that title, which, ultimately determines how far they will go.”

How far will Sky go? Watch out Hollywood, watch out AMA’s, watch out world. Remember this name: Skvwalker.  

Follow Sky on Social Media:

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