Semiotics: The study signs and sign systems
Denotation: What an image actually shows and is immediately apparent, as opposed to the assumptions an individual reader may make about it.
Connotation: The meaning of a sign that is arrived at through cultural experiences a reader brings to it.
This is all about associated meanings think about the connected meanings of the following colours:
Red, black, blue, green, white, purple, yellow and pink.
read the article below which talks in detail about gender and the colour pink
Observer Online Article the Connotations of Pink
Some connotations to places, people, music, colours, smells, objects and things have a commonly (universally) associated meaning for many people and then others have a very personal associated meaning (connotation) depending on our experiences.