People have wildly different preferred styles. My desktop tends to collect documents and folders, and I tend to stack up windows, thoug that only happens when I am in the middle of working on something that uses different elements, photo editing, spread sheets and word editor. I usually just minimize (Windows/Mac) / iconfify (*nixi) the windows. With Vista, I can pop into flipper mode where all the opened windows, incuding the minimized ones, are temporarily reorganized in to a flip stack that can then be rotated. I had something like this a long time ago as a shareware product for Mac OS 9, but the computational requirements were too severe for the limited speed of the computers back then. OS X has there trick of reorganizing windows too. Both systems are nice but somewhat limited in that I'd like smart piles.
The backdrops I choose have to have limited constrast else the icons can get washed out by the highlights or the screen can look a bit murky by dark tonalities. Here are some tumbnails (click to see full resolution).