People who create always want to feel like their work matters and one way is to seek comments from others. While friends and family are probably the easier to turn to, I find that I learn most when I receive frank comments from the perfect stranger.
The problem I usually face with feedback from friends and close ones is also highlighted by NYTimes.com’s Design Director Khoi Vinh: eliciting honest and critical comments. After all, the point when sharing a work is not to receive a ego massage, but pointers to improve on the work.
But as I have written elsewhere, it is so easy to criticise but so darn hard to be critical, so maybe that is why people don’t want to fall into the trap of saying things they can’t really explain and end up hurting friendships.