This was too good an opportunity to miss , as i very rarely actually see honey bees so had to make the most of the chance to shoot a few high magnification portraits.
It was perched on top of a small white flower, i have no idea what it was! lol but i could hold the stem between two fingers on left hand , and then rest the lens barrel of the mpe-65 macro lens on my palm to keep everything steady to shoot the individual frames for the focus stack.
Focus stacking is a method of combining multiple frames, each with a slightly different focus point into a single image with a much greater depth of field than a single frame could produce. at high magnifications diffraction softening occurs so i shoot each frame at f5 - f6.3 to produce the sharpest image possible.
Even using this method it can be quite difficult to align 5- 7 frames good enough for the stacking software to align properly. shooting between x4 and x5 magnification is very challenging , a minute movement will prevent the frames aligning causing a doubled appearance! i some situations , with just three or four frames i can manually stack the frames on layers in photoshop, but it does take a while to do !
here are the two finished images
In this second frame you can see a black background in the left hand side because the flash only illuminates the subject and no light can reach the background . i always try to place a leaf or something close behind the main subject to prevent this happening.
here is the flash / diffuser set up used for these two images , i have added a twin sheet "tent style" diffuser to the front of the lens which spreads the light nicely .
bee shots taken with canon 5d2, mpe-65 and 430ex flash gun