Some poor attitudes became evident in the comments.
Shame on those photographers and/or photography hobbyists who feel they are "elite" because they have better or more expensive equipment or because they can afford to travel to exotic or beautiful places to do their photography or because they have more skill or experience than others.
I think the art of photography is challenging, but the purpose and enjoyment of the finished products is very simple. An excellent photograph is meaningful or enjoyable because it is an excellent photograph.
In history, great photographs have accomplished many things. Before our country was as settled has it has become, photographs stirred interest in other areas of the country and contributed to expansion. Photographs have inspired politicians and citizens to establish National Parks, wildlife reserves, and other conservation efforts. Photographs have informed people of the horror of war, of the sadness of poverty and the beauty of things difficult to see with the human eye. Photographs of child labor changed the law of the land. Photographs have stirred whole segments of the population to work for civil rights. Photographs have made us laugh, cry, change our mind, affirm our beliefs, and take action. Photographs help us keep our memories fresh.
Photographs document reality.
Who cares if a photograph was taken by an expert or a beginner? Who cares where the photograph was taken? Who cares what equipment was used? Who cares if the photograph was the result of extensive planning or learning of Technic or was a lucky accident or an effort in between the two?
I know, these things can be of value for documentation or to historians. Perhaps such information could be used in photographic training. But this kind of information does not and should not influence the perception of the photograph by those who view it.
An excellent photograph is not excellent because the photographer spent huge sums of money to travel to the place where the photograph was taken. An excellent photograph is not excellent because very expensive camera and lens was used. An excellent photograph is excellent because it has all or most of these elements:
The image is properly exposed.
The image is composed in such a way to convey that which the photographer intended to convey.
The image must have interesting composition.
A color image must make interesting use of color.
A black and white image must use a wide range of grey tones or nearly pure black and/or white to convey it's message.
The image must have a purpose.
The image has an interesting point of view.