Quote Originally Posted by polyglot View Post
Buy the cheapest RC VC Gloss that you can get enough of; personally I would suggest the 100x5x7 Arista.EDU unless the shipping makes another brand cheaper. They are all excellent quality with no risks attaching to any of them. Kentmere has a speed advantage but it's not necessary. Use red LEDs for the safelight and it will be fine for all the brands. Don't buy FB (it's harder to process), don't buy graded (no greens!), get Gloss finish because it will contact-print the cleanest.

You don't strictly need filters. Filters are intended for darkroom printing when deciding how to interpret a negative onto the print, they allow you to adjust contrast. Exposing the paper directly to scene light is a bit of an abuse and will result in wonky contrasts but there's basically nothing you can do about it with this cheap approach so ignore it. If you want to avoid that problem, use film because that's what's designed to capture a scene.

If your prints have too much contrast (very likely), use a yellowish filter under the lightbulb when making the prints from the negatives. If your friend has a set of Multigrade filters, try to borrow the #0 filter. You can also try using a yellowish filter in front of the pin-hole to reduce contrast a bit. Consider it advanced technique for trying once you've had a few successes.
Hey Polyglot!

Thanks so much for your time and the extremely valuable info you have given me. I would buy the Arista.EDU, but other freestyle supplies are not as cheap as B&H and so I will probably buy from Oriental: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...00_Glossy.html or Ilford, which is obviously a great brand. I am considering buying 25 8x10 and cutting them into 100 4x5. Thoughts? And would gloss be the best for contact printing other than something like pearl?

I dont want to use film b/c it is too technical/expensive + I really want the kids to understand the photographic process and film might be too abstract/ out there for them to fully grasp the concept also like I've said before the Image doesn't have to be AMAZING, just good enough for the kids to realize that a good photographic CAN be taken in an easy and makeable way without having to use some extremely techy device where all you do is press a button and a photo is "magically" recorded. However, any more tips to produce the best possible photo with the method of contact paper printing would be helpful. Would the filter idea be the best?

My friend got back to me on his photo supplies and unfortunately he didn't have a red safelight( or developing trays(the two things I really needed). Is there any place on here where I can post to find out if someone who lives in my area would let me borrow some of their photo stuff? My friend said "I have an enlarger, filters and a couple of lenses. I have a timer (for the enlarger) and a 35mm developing tank. I have a couple of clips to hang film to dry and an easel." Would any of this be helpful in the project. I can send you a photo if you want.

I plan on editing the original process I first posted with all the new information I have gathered. It would be great if you or any others would review the process once I have it posted to check for any flaws and add suggestions. Thanks again!