Photographers who can capture insects in perfect focus are true masters. My approach may not be entirely correct, so I have some experimenting to do. You don’t even have to look that closely to realize that the bee is just a bit out of focus. Too bad because the pose is quite interesting. After tracking a few bees, I noticed that they flew into the poppies head first. However, instead of backing out, the bees would turn around and exit head first. Even though I anticipated the bee’s exit, I still could not nail the focus because the bee was moving about quite quickly and the depth of focus was quite narrow.
Nikon D800, AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED, ISO 160, 180mm, f/8, 1/200s
How do you get 180mm with a 105mm lens? With a TC-17EII, a 1.7x teleconverter.
The spider photo came out quite cleanly. The spider was on a web between a handrail. However, the web is out-of-focus and invisible. You can see the hair on the legs of the spider. Amazing!
Nikon D800, AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED, ISO 800, 105mm, f/8, 1/1,600