Ever run across a photograph that made your jaw drop, and then made you ask, “How did the photographer do that?”

Take these photographs posted on Flickr by Sam Droege of the USGS Native Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab, for example:

Echinocactus polycephalus – cotton top cactus seed

Echinocactus polycephalus ssp xeranthermoides

Paspalum species

Southern red oak acorn

In this case, Sam Droege offers a manual that shows the set up and process. He reveals that he uses StackShot Rail, which digitally combines a series of photographs to give that amazing all over focus. The URL address to the manual How to Take Macrophotographs of Insects BIML Lab2 is on his profile page.

Although I’m not ready to buy all the fancy equipment, these just might inspire me to try black backgrounds and pay more attention to lighting.

What do you think? Are you ready to give this technique a try?