Mini-Documentary Looks at How to Balance Inspiration and Obligation as a Creative

Meet Mac Premo, arist and hired gun

Mac Premo is a guy who makes art, and has always made art, and here's a pretty cool mini-documentary about Mac Premo that you might well mistake for an ad for Mac Premo.

Created by a guy named Bas Berkhout, it's beautifully shot and edited, with a narrative that pretty much breezes right by. Premo, for his part, seems pretty deep. He's just trying to find his way through the vast void that is a life lived with the knowledge that the only inevitable truth is death. Thankfully, there's the beautiful paradox of striving to fill his existential chasm by caring about things like baseball and steak and wine and family.

Of course, videos about the struggles of being an artist, real as they may be, are generally pretty trying. The psychological sausage-making of any calling makes for a limited frame—especially a calling that's intrinsically self-indulgent. But this does about as good a job as the genre can. Rather than, say, parading out a supercut of platitudes from a string of working artists, it takes a closer look at the story of a single talented creative who seems successful enough as a both an independent creator and hired gun, but not super famous.

Yes, self-descriptions like "stuff maker" deserve skewering, when perfectly serviceable words like "artist" exist to say the same thing, better. But the clip, and its generally self-reflective tone, certainly play their part in conveying a sort of rallying cry for a certain audience—and illustrating a small example of how fine the line between content and marketing can be.

"To be the arbiter of good stories is to live forever," Premo says, in the ad's conclusion.

Or at least, it can delude you into thinking you can.