After interning in script development at Hungry Man Productions in NYC, Ad Santell began his journey as a cameraman, working at the Arriflex Camera House CSC, where he learned everything he could about cameras.
A freelance career soon followed, working for and learning from top cinematographers such as Russell Carpenter, John Perez and Ben Weinstein.
Ad then began shooting for MTV’s Making the Video lensing projects featuring Beyonce, Jamie Foxx, Ludacris and others. After that, a year-long journey with MySpace Music sent him around the country shooting the likes of Taylor Swift, Willie Nelson, Snoop Dogg and Brad Paisley. Ad also contributed to Real Time with Bill Maher, working on opening sketch comedy spots and man on the street segments. His career has also taken him to numerous red-carpet events, conducting celebrity interviews and other live events for Vanity Fair and Hollywood Health and Society.
Ad eventually set down roots in Claremont with his wife and started a family. He launched Claremont Video and began directing, shooting and editing stories for local businesses. Individuals, the Chamber of Commerce (Discover Claremont) and then Claremont Educational Foundation, on which he serves as a board member. Ad joined VMA in 2021, bringing his unique camera and digital talents to an array of clients.