Description: I have a tall tank that is just under 30 gallons. Inside of the tank I have black aquarium gravel with smooth, black to dark river pebbles layered on top of it. In the center I have a large Buddha statue that is almost the height of the aquarium. Behind the statue I have a bubble curtain and have various artificial plants surrounding him. The background is painted blue and am very pleased with the way it turned out. Penguin Power Wheel 350 Double Filter with Bio-balls and carbon. Also I have a self regulated heater and a aquaculture double air pump that's powerful enough for a 60 gallon tank. .
Advice: I am a new hobbyists but would say to take your time. The process of setting the tank up is fun in itself so don't rush to get the results you have envisioned. It's a delicate balance (to quote both Radiohead and The Lion King hahaha) that can't be achieved in a day or two.