Now I'm using this setup in natural and controlled environment: Canon 450D, Canon EFS 18-55mm F3.5-5.6, Built-in flash with home made difusser.
Every DSLR has it's own built-in flash. Flash is very important in macro photography, because the high magnification requires a lot of light. So built-in flash is the cheapest way to make that happen.
I use it pretty much in all my images, except ones when I'm stacking photos.
Setting the power of flash always depends on what situation you are, so I always make a couple of photos to set my exposure right and then hopefully take a photo of the subject before it's gone.
Canon EF-S 18-55 mm IS lenses
It's basic lenses for amateurs because of the aperture 3.5 - 5.6. It means that lenses is dark. But that is not the issue here, because it doesn't matter in macro photography. I usually set aperture to 8, because it have good depth of field and I can also see my subject pretty clearly through an eye-finder.
The lenses must be reversed and the front of the lenses must face the front of the camera, and it's sound hard, but I hand held my lenses when taking the photographs. I'm pretty cheap. There are special reverse-rings for that.
Setting lenses to 18 mm I got very high magnification but also narrow DOF (depth of field).
55 mm is good for bigger subjects like butterflies, bees and others and it has good DOF.
I use that button to set my aperture. To make that you need to mount your lenses normally, set the aperture from menu then press the aperture button and while holding it take of your lenses. Aperture will be locked on.
When I first tried macro, close-up photography, I was using Industar-61 55mm F2.8 + home made bellows.
When I shot in controlled environment, I always use focus stacking with Photoshop, diffusers, reflectors. Usually I use thungsen lighting, sometimes built-in flash.Here is my tutorial on how to stack images in Photoshop: CLICK HERE
If You have any questions about my equipment, or any tips or something write to me HERE.