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  • Cheryl DiFrank

How to get your photo on a billboard in Times Square.

I take lots of photos of my family. Lots of holidays and birthday parties and vacations. And they all have great memories attached to them. But I also love to capture the unique and unexpected moments. By definition, these photos are often hard to anticipate. Recently, I had the opportunity to get a photo of my family on a Times Square billboard. I'd say that's pretty unique.

My family and I were recently in New York City and, thanks to a friend's recommendation to walk the High Line (which I do recommend on a nice fall or spring day), we happened upon what seems to be a well-kept secret (until now). By simply visiting Samsung837 (a Samsung experience, not a Samsung store) in New York City, and getting our photo taken, we were able to see ourselves projected on a massive billboard right in the middle of Times Square.

My family in front of our Times Square billboard.

It's very easy, and free (which is rare these days!). So, next time you're in New York City and have a few extra minutes between shows, shopping and dining, and want to have a truly unique photo from your visit, follow these two simple steps:

Step 1 - Visit Samsung837 at 837 Washington St., on the West Side near Chelsea Market, and near the south end of the High Line. It’s not a Samsung store but an “experience” where you can explore and try out all kinds of Samsung technology. When you get there tell them you'd like to get your photo taken for Times Square.

They will take your photo with a couple different backgrounds. Make sure that there are no logos or brand names visible in the photo or it won't be approved for Times Square. My son had to wear his Under Armour shirt backwards and my daughter had to make sure her hair was covering up the Columbia logo on her jacket. After they take your photo it goes to the Samsung powers that be to be approved (it won’t get approved if there is anything showing that shouldn’t be showing). If it gets approved, you will get an email saying you were approved! After that you will get a second email. The second email is the one you don’t really want to open until you get to Times Square and are ready to see the photo!

Step 2 - Make your way to Times Square. (This can be right away or days later.) The billboard is on 47th St, across from the TKTS booth, and right above a big Coca-Cola billboard. When you get there, get positioned, make sure you pick the best spot to take a photo with the billboard behind you. Try to get directly in front of the billboard (maybe on the TKTS stands or in the square right there). And then open that second email. When you open that second email, first it will ask you which of the photos you want to display. You select it and then click the button “I’m ready”. Get ready and within 1 minute your photo will appear up on the billboard. It stays up for about a minute. Have your camera ready!

When we did this recently, the relatives we were visiting in New York didn't even know about it and hadn't been with us with we took the photo at Samsung837 so I think they were a bit skeptical. But when they saw our faces show up on that huge billboard, everyone was shocked. That was almost better than the photo itself!

Enjoy, and keep an eye on our social media for more fun ways to share your photos!

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