Taking classes helped me immensely. I learned about depth of field and how to use it. I also learned some basic composition rules and when to apply them. I think I learned the most when we presented our images to the class and heard their comments.
I enjoy taking photos now, but I usually take snapshots as opposed to photos these days. I did take some great artistic photographs for my wife that we put on notecards and sold in a gallery. That was a lot of fun.
I think that you can learn to be a better photographer by taking lots of photos and showing them to photographers you admire to get their feedback. You can also look for books of photographs that you really like and try to emulate those photos. Compare your photos with the ones you like and see how they differ. Learn to be able to photograph and process your images to get the results you want.