princecody: If you think those macros are good check out mine.
Super Macro Northern Pearly Eye Butterfly https://www.flickr.com/photos/princecody/9873421005/in/photolist-oopzev-g3tS5D-g2v3ei-gdtMAj-grbunh-fvbViL-g2vg2e-fAksKL-fvrMVM-fu5tC1
Blue Dasher Dragonflyhttps://www.flickr.com/photos/princecody/14725130460/
Northern Pearly Eye Butterfly https://www.flickr.com/photos/princecody/14693411179/
Swallowtail Butterfly Semi Macro https://www.flickr.com/photos/princecody/14751875029/
Sorry, but the original post came across as arrogant -if you're really all that and a bag of chips then why didn't you submit any photos when the call for submissions was made in the macro forum? If you are going to claim that you're better then you really need to bring your "A game" to back it up, and IMHO you didn't. You're not the only one who doesn't focus stack (I don't), and you're not the only one who uses minimal post processing (I spend all of two minutes on any one photo, and most of that time is removing dust spots). The color and saturation in my images is due more to the quality of the light that I use and not my post processing...
racketman: Hi Alacher, lots of great macro work is done without flashes, indeed I would argue you can't beat natural light. You will often need a low level tripod of course and a Plamp (Plant clamp )is very useful. Stacking software will let you use wider apertures and still get good DOF when required.On Flickr check out the work of John Hallmen.
I can only reply to the original poster and not directly to you SteB, so hopefully you see this: http://nocroppingzone.blogspot.com.es/2009/11/magic-angles.html <-- From 2009 ;)
Kurt: Agreed, I love low contrast, diffused, natural light -it looks great! But I just don't see it often, and when I do I'm looking for something stationary :)
Sorry but the first image is centered and cropped. The second is passable but cropped. The third is centered and has a distracting foreground. Love the light in the last one, but it's cropped and centered. If you're going to boast that your photography is better than what's pictured in this set then you really need to bring your "A game" and IMHO you didn't...
D1N0: Hopefully no critters or vermin were harmed during the shooting of these great pics.
All of my macro work is non-destructive with respect to the subject, and the current push in the discipline is to do no harm.
Sorry, but if you restrict yourself to using natural light when shooting macro then you're going to be photographing "still life" -you can pretty much forget about shooting even semi-active targets...
I understand the need for this type of photography, and I can appreciate it. But it's just "documentary" macro and I don't think that killing subjects for a photo should be the norm. There's also a lot to be said for an image that tells a story, and you can shoot at high magnification without focus stacking...
Excellent article, and a subject that I've blogged about in the past. I study portrait composition and apply it to my macro work all the time.
Another aspect of macro composition is determining just how much magnification should be used. Often times just clipping the wings of the subject is a bad thing, it leaves the viewer wanting to see the whole insect. So I either go for a "scenic" shot, or just a photo of its head.