Useful Flickr Groups
Getting feedback is one of the most important things you can do to hone your skills as a photographer, after actually doing it and being critical of your own work.
And Flickr has some interesting groups that are great for getting feedback on your work. Sure, I'll review your work and give you feedback, but if I'm too slow, or you think I'm all washed up, or you just want more opinions, you should check some of these out.
Score Me! is a group that allows you to post a picture and get five ratings on it from other people, on a scale of 0-10. You must also give ratings on the five pictures that were posted before yours, or you'll get kicked out of the group really fast. The admins are very good here, and there is a thread you can post to if you want to report a rulebreaker, and another one to get the scores you missed. Also, make sure not to post another picture until five others have been posted! This one is only somewhat useful if you want some real feedback, since the group doesn't require anything more than just a rating, but many people there will give you good feedback. The best part is that you can strive for a high score, and if you get a high score you can post your pic in one of the appropriate threads reserved for high-scoring photos.
Plus-minus comments is a group with an excellent premise. It's much like Score Me! (and all the other groups I mention here) because when you post a picture, you have to comment on pictures that were posted before yours. On this one, instead of giving a rating, you talk about the positive features of the photo as well as the negative features. My only complaint is that this one only requires three comments per picture posted, so you only get feedback from three people.
Hit, Miss, or Maybe is a group that will get you some fast feedback, but it's not very in-depth. It's only a matter of whether they like it, hate it, or are undecided. Again, this one only gets you three comments. For a similar group but with some feedback (albeit limited) you can check out Hit, Miss, Maybe, WHY?
Comments Comments Comments is one that will get you feedback from five people. The rules are very loose here, so people can say pretty much whatever they want about the picture, but I find it to be more useful than the Score Me! group.
Rate and Comment: Amazing Photos is almost exactly like the Score Me! group, but it requires some feedback in addition to the score. It might take longer to get your comments here though, and if you miss a comment it might take longer to get the replacement ones. There are also some specialty groups based on the same framework, first and foremost in my mind being Rate and Comment: Black and White, for black and white pictures only. I was recently made an admin there, so if there are any problems you just need to let me know and I will take care of it.
10 to 1 is a group much like Score Me!, but you have to comment on 10 photos to get your score (but this means you get feedback from 10 people). If someone "favorites" your photo, they score it an 11/10. I haven't used this group yet, but I was in a similar one that fell apart due to bad administration. This one was founded by people fed up by that group, so I imagine it will be good. Like the Score Me! group, this one has threads for high-scoring photos.
So, check them out, and if you're not already a Flickr member, you should sign up. Then you can come over and join the group for this blog while you're at it.