I think in the beginning, a critique from a seasoned photographer can be useful to improve ones technical ability and eye for composition. There are things that most would think "work" better that other things in more than half the situations.

I am very certain about something else. When I expose a frame and spend my energy to make a print, I want to make ME happy with it. No matter how great I may think my image is, someone will suggest an improvement that I know would ruin my interpretation of the image. I think the idea, "suit yourself first" is exactly right for fine art photography. It is for that reason that doing commercial photography can be frustrating - people want to pay you to do uninspired work. Thank God for the Sears photo studio -When people want a portrait, I send them right over to Sears! When I want to make their portrait, I'll do it for free - so I can please myself and make the photograph reflect my idea. It also amazes me which photos I sell, not usually my favorites but at least I am satisfied with them and proud of them.
Frank