I had an interesting time taking my plates. I went out a mostly cloudy day knowing that the main goal of the shoot was to get hard shadows. I would have sunlight for about 30 seconds before a large cloud came over and blocked the sun for several minutes. Each time the sun was out, I'd scramble to get the right exposure settings on my camera and taking each photo. It was actually interesting seeing just how fast the sun was changing.
I used an auto-bracketing feature on my camera to get several images with taken with different shutter speeds. Since it was so bright outside, most of the picture became blown out. I could have adjusted my camera to a higher ISO. I did not because I had already finished taking the other photos, and I was afraid of loosing the quickly shifting sun again. I used Photoshop's 'Merge to HDR Pro' to combine all the images into one.
Behind the Scenes Setup
And then I bumped the tripod... But here's more a scope of the location.