I like to use canned, crushed tomatoes. I really don't like the canned diced tomatoes.
If making a tomato sauce, I use a little bit of onion and garlic, sauted quickly in olive oil, add crushed tomatoes. I don't add a whole lot of seasoning. Fresh, torn basil is good.
When making a meat sauce, I brown the meat, take it out of the pan, then saute onion, carrots, garlic (added last so as not to burn). Then pince tomato paste (carmelizing it). Then add beef broth to deglaze. Return meat to pan, add crushed tomatoes. As for herbs, I use dried oregano, maybe some *egads* "italian seasoning."