This last weekend I attended Mike Moats Macro Boot Camp. Mike is a very good close-up photographer. He's been published numerous times and it a very nice guy. I learned a few things about how to look at / for macro photographs a little better. I think I learned more from his style and what to bring to our His Light Workshops (and what not to). A considerable amount of what he goes over, we go over in our workshops. I guess I thought there would be more "secret sauce" into close-up work. Mike relies heavily on Nik Color Efex & Nik Viveza, along with a little Photoshop Elements (yes I said elements). This surprised me a bit, but I guess you only need to use the tools you want and not need a bunch of overhead.
I have been using close-up and macro interchangeably and I really shouldn't. They are very different things. Close-up work is really when you get in close and only capture the essence of your subject in a small area. I've been doing this a lot in the last few years. Macro is often used interchangeably with micro photography. Macro photography allows a photographer to achieve a 1:1 magnification of a subject. Think of it this way, seeing a bug on a leaf is close-up photography, seeing the bugs eye only is macro or micro.