He graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a B.S. in design in 1961. In the Navy, he served as a communications officer.
By the late 1960s, Mr. Blackburn had moved to New York to work for the design firm Chermayeff & Geismar, and later left to found Danne & Blackburn. He married Tina Harsham in 1979. Mr. Blackburn parted ways with Mr. Danne in the 1980s and started his own firm, Blackburn & Associates, on Park Avenue.
In addition to his daughter, Mr. Blackburn is survived by his wife; two sons, David Blackburn and Nick Sontag; a sister, Sandra Beeson; and eight grandchildren.
He moved to Santa Fe, N.M., with his wife a decade ago and they settled in Lakewood, Colo., in 2017. A personal project that became important to him was designing logos for two Episcopal Churches of which he was a longtime congregant, Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Weston, Conn., and St. Bede’s Episcopal Church in Santa Fe.
Last year, Mr. Blackburn was surprised when NASA revived the worm logo to appear on the side of a SpaceX rocket that launched into orbit that spring. The fate of the worm had always remained a tender subject for him.
“I think he was glad to know,” his daughter said, “that his design was finally back in space.”