DIY Macro Flash Bracket
A DIY "butterfly bracket" for flash closeups as described in John Shaw's Closeups In Nature. This one is made from aluminum bought at a home center, a few bolts, 1/4 X 20 knobs, a cheap ball-head, and the lowest-power flash I could find at the time (a Vivitar 1900). The rig fastens to the camera bottom. Holes are drilled and marked along the flash arm for the various combinations of macro lens and extension tubes I use.
To use it, I set my lens at f/22, dial the lens focus to its closest, and move the camera in relation to the subject to get a sharp image. Using the fixed configuration almost always guarantees correct exposure for even fast-moving subjects (bees, butterflies, etc.).