Iwao Takamoto was an animator and director, best known for his work for the productions of Hanna-Barbera. He was born in Los Angeles into a Japanese family. Like many other Japanese Americans, he spent large part of World War II in the Manzanar internment camp. It was there that he learned how to draw.
He began his career in animation with the Walt Disney Studios in 1945, and participated in productions like 'Cinderella' (1950), 'Lady and the Tramp' (1955) and 'Sleeping Beauty' (1959). He was hired by Hanna-Barbera in 1961, where he worked mainly as a character designer. Takamoto's most famous design is that of 'Scooby-Doo'. He also supervized shows like 'The Addams Family', 'Hong Kong Phooey' and 'Jabberjaw', and directed the feature length animated films 'Charlotte's Web' (1973) and 'Jetsons: The Movie' (1990).
Takamoto was Vice-President of Creative Design at Hanna-Barbera, and later Vice President of Special Projects for Warner Brothers Animation. Takamoto additionally assisted on the pencil art of the 'Flintstones' newspaper comic in the early 1960s. He also drew several 'Yogi Bear' Sunday pages of the 1965-1967 period.