I've combined a strong passion (and some basic training) for painting and drawing with the photographic skills gathered during my activities as an amateur astronomer... the results are what you see in my gallery.
A combination ... I have taken classes that applied to what I needed to learn but I also experiment and find my own path. Looking at others work and talking/working with others has been a wealth of training and learning.
So far self-taught, though I did a DIY photography course in the charter school I went to. It was mostly written stuff and kind of boring, teaching all the terms (like aperture or ISO) and some technical stuff like the rule of thirds.
I was taught a lot about composition, framing by my dad, which led to me being self taught, and then when I wanted a firmer grasp on the solid technical aspects (I wanted to back my instinctive, artistic stuff with technical knowledge) I took a course at the local college as an elective.
My Portfolio and my story were enough to get me into the course without the normal pre-requisites.
I'm still learning. Will be until my brain falls apart or I die.
Self taught. While it is nice to get lessons from someone else in a school environment the idea would be theirs. In other words you are learning what they think is the right way. No point in that. If what you are shooting looks good in life it is very hard to mess it up in a photo. Experience tell you what to do with that beautiful thing you are shooting but it has to be your own experience not that of a teacher.