Tag: scooby-doo art

Scooby-Doo Origins, and the Scooby-Doo Original Production Art Collection

Zoinks! We have Scooby-Doo original production art this week as our Wednesday Wonders, and I’m happy to day we are SUPER timely for once! Let me explain…(and then let me relay some fun facts and info on one of my favorite cartoons, Scooby-Doo!) 

This May sees the online release of the computer-animated feature SCOOB!, direct to streaming. It features the voice of Frank Welker as the title character, who is a member of the original 1969 Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! voice cast. Rounding out the Mystery gang are Will Forte as Norville ‘Shaggy’ Rogers, Gina Rodriguez as Velma, Zac Efron as Fred, and Amanda Seifried as Daphne. Riding in the wake of the On Demand success of Trolls World Tour, which broke all digital records when offered for $19.99 for home viewing, Warner Brothers is following suit.  They have decided to stick to their May 15th opening date. The movie had moved its opening date several times already, so now they’re gambling on its potential to capture a quarantine audience looking for fun family viewing. 

Here’s the trailer:


When you think of scary cartoons, Scooby-Doo is almost always the first that comes to mind. The character and the cartoon shows, which originated in 1969 with Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!, followed friends Fred, Daphne, Velma, Shaggy, and his pup Scooby-Doo on adventures where they’d drive around solving mysteries in dark, creepy locations around the country, though in the end the monster, creature, or ghost wound up being a trick by the local town’s often high-profile crook.  

Originally, creators Joe Ruby and Ken Spears, who were writers at Hanna-Barbara, came up with a show called “Mysteries Five”, where a dog named “Too Much” was just a sidekick. The names of the kids and what they did were different, too. They were musicians in a band, Geoff, Mike, Kelly, Linda, W.W., and a bongo-playing dog, who solved mysteries when they weren’t playing gigs. 

Then the name changed to “Who’s S-S-Scared?”. It was CBS head of daytime programming Fred Silverman who renamed both the show and the character to Scooby-Doo. Though the story put out by Ruby and Spears is that Silverman was inspired by Frank Sinatra, which made good press, the likeliest origin story is from a song by the fictional band The Archies, “Feelin’ So Good (S.K.O.O.B.Y-D.O.O.)” which had been released in 1968. At the time, Silverman had been deeply involved in overseeing The Archie Show as the head of children’s programming for CBS. The Archies are most famous for Sugar, Sugar, which was the top single of 1969!

Here’s the song that (likely) inspired Scooby-Doo!:

Scheduled opposite ABC’s The Hardy Boys, the original show became a ratings success, and led to a rash of copycat shows produced by Hanna Barbera with a team of kids and a sidekick solving crimes, including Josie and the Pussycats, The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan, Speed Buggy, and Jabberjaw, just to name a few!


The character, designed by one of the most famous character designers in cartoon history, Iwao Takamoto. Knowing it was a cowardly Great Dane, he asked help in creating Scooby from a colleague at Hanna-Barbara who was a Great Dane breeder, and added as many elements that would be considered undesirable for a show dog: spots, a sloped back, and to be honest, Scooby looks like he has hip dysplasia! Scooby was originally voiced by Don Messick, who was an integral part of all the shows from 1969 through the 90s, and then passed away in 1997. Messick is also known for Astro on the Jetsons, and Muttley in Wacky Races, Boo-Boo Bear in Yogi Bear, Poppa Smurf in the Smurfs, and tons of other famous characters. 


Our friend, Hanna Barbera concept artist Bob Singer, worked with Takamoto on the original 1969 show, Scooby-Doo! Where Are You? and designed a number of the monsters, villains, and creatures in the Hanna Barbera character design department. He started with Hanna Barbera before Scooby-Doo was developed, and was part of the crew of animators and concept artists who built the show from the ground up. He worked in layouts, character design, story development with storyboards, and a host of other duties in the tight group of artists, and he has the stories to prove it. Some of your favorite secondary characters were designed by him. 

You can read about Bob Singer and his contributions on THIS BLOG.


This Scooby-Doo animation art collection was pulled from the first two animated features created at Warner Brothers, (Hanna Barbera became part of Time Warner in 1996, when Turner merged with Time Warner) Scooby-Doo! on Zombie Island (1998) and Scooby Doo and the Witch’s Ghost (1999). It includes both Scooby-Doo original production cels and original production backgrounds. There are some great moments capturing Scooby and Shaggy together, and we’re excited about the Mystery Mobile cel and background and Scooby gang production cel.

We wanted, though, as you’ve seen lately, to incorporate as many folks who could benefit from this collection as possible in terms of small businesses and artists, so all the Scooby-Doo production cels will come with a Bob Singer signature and remarque drawing of Scooby. So not only will you have an original production cel from Scooby-Doo, you’ll also have an original drawing of Scooby’s head done by Bob Singer, who worked at Hanna Barbera from the beginning, and worked alongside Iwao Takamoto on Scooby-Doo! Where are You?, which means this time, when you buy these this Scooby Doo production art, you’re supporting our gallery, plus the small business that sells all the official Hanna Barbera art, as well as legend of animation Bob Singer, during the pandemic. Everybody wins, and it doesn’t get better than that! 

An original layout from 1968!

You can also buy a rare original layout from Scooby Doo! Where are You and an original layout drawing of Scooby-Doo himself. Check out all Bob Singer’s art HERE


Click to see all the Scooby-Doo limited edition and original art!


Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island, a direct-to-video animated ‘horror’ film came out in 1998, after the popularity of Scooby Doo soared in the 90s due to reruns being aired on the Cartoon Network. What makes both Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island and Scooby-Doo and the Witch’s Ghost particularly cool is both cartoons feature real supernatural characters instead of someone like the sheriff or local real estate mogul dressed in a costume. In fact, the basis for the story is Daphne, Fred, Velma, and Shaggy, the members of Mystery Inc. have gone their separate ways because they are bored by all the fake ghosts they catch. No worries, this story features voodoo dolls, zombies, and even were-cats! This feature was nominated for both an Annie Award for Outstanding Achievement in Animated Home Video Production, and a Motion Picture Sound Editors Best Sound Editing Award.

One of the best trivia stories about Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island is that Casey Kasem, who originated the voice of Shaggy, was offered the role, but had recently gone vegan, and demanded that they remove all meat and dairy from the character’s diet. They recast the role with Billy West, famous for his voice acting on Doug, Futurama, and The Ren & Stimpy Show. He also provided the voices of Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd for Space Jam. 

You can watch the trailer for it here. Notice the tagline “This time…they’re real!” Also notice Shaggy is already eating meat and cheese in the trailer…and lots of cats! (would cats survive in the bayou? or would they be gator snacks?)


Soon after the great success of Zombie Island, they released Scooby-Doo! and the Witch’s Ghost in 1999, which got nominated for the same Annie award and Motion Picture Sound Editors award. Once again, this featured real ghosts instead of masked crooks. They once again replaced the voice of Shaggy, this time with Scott Innes, who was already voicing Scooby-Doo, because Billy West was busy with Futurama.  Scooby-Doo! and the Witch’s Ghost features an eco-goth band named The Hex Girls, and, happily for any wiccans reading this blog, both good and bad wiccan practitioners are represented in the story. The Hex Girls band and characters, it’s worth noting, became huge fan favorites, and appeared in a number of other Scooby-Doo movies and episodes thereafter! 

*Note: This cartoon features the voice of the incomparable Tim Curry as Ben Ravencroft, reason enough to give it a watch! 


In the time of a pandemic, it’s great to be reminded that our pets, whether dog, cat, fish, or fowl, are our best friends, our comfort, and a part of our family, and they always have our back!

Always hungry. Always scared. Always the perfect team!

For this week’s COVID Comfort Cartoon, I’ve picked the Hex Girls performing live, with special guests that come onstage: Scooby and the whole gang! No, it’s not Halloween, but it IS a scary time. Yes, it’s cheesy, but it’s fun, silly, and distracting from our new-usual daily scares! And seriously, The Hex Girls are famous to folks who were coming of age or were questioning their sexuality in 1998 through the early 2000’s as great affirmation of innocent yet positive individual expression. Hit it, sisters!

Animation Artist Bob Singer: Cartoon History-Hanna Barbera and Warner Brothers Artist and his art

When the weirdest, and I’d even say craziest thing that’s happened in our lifetime happened, and a disease started sweeping the world, as an art gallery and small business owner I started thinking about how we’d weather the storm, yes, but I also considered all the artists that we work with who also survive and even thrive on selling their art to fans around the world. I also considered the wholesale companies and representatives I love, (and I don’t love them all. I love several, because they are awesome human beings). How could we help not only ourselves, but the friends and collaborators we’ve known for dozens of years? 

First up, I thought of Bob Singer. An old, brilliant, and I’d say formidable 92-year-old codger who has been part of the history of animation since the 50s. I’ve known him for over 10 years, and have had him on several of the ASIFA: Hollywood panels I’ve produced for San Diego Comic-Con. Luckily for me, for ArtInsights, and potentially for fans, we were able to get an exclusive collection of original art by this very important artist. 


Bob Singer is an animation artist, character designer, layout and background artist and storyboard director for a wide variety of shows and studios. He wound of choosing art in a sort of random way. He says, “When I was in high school, I loved art and I also loved music. When I found out I had to buy my own instrument and we couldn’t afford it, I said, ‘all right, I’ll become an artist’.”  

He graduated in 1955 from the prestigious Art Center College of Design in LA, started working in the television animation industry after spending a few years in the advertising industry. Yes, he was briefly one of those “Mad Men”. 

Starting in 1956, he worked for Marvel, U.P.A, Shamus Culhane, and Warner Brothers, and continued to take projects from nearly every studio through his career.  

It was at Hanna Barbera at which he spent the better part of 27 years of his animation career. He has worked on most of Hanna Barbera’s best shows, and you’ll see his indelible mark on The Flintstones, Scooby Doo, Hong Kong Phooey, Jabberjaw and so many more cartoons that continue to be loved around the world. 

He has said that his favorite tv show he has worked on is Scooby Doo. From Bob Singer himself:

“My favorite was far and away Scooby Doo. Those were some great shows that were designed in 68 and released in 69. And after so many years, it’s still running all over the world. I was part of the presentation crew that put it all together, although the characters were designed by the great Iwao Takamoto. My part was running the layouts on the show. I laid out the first Scooby.”

Bob Singer created this original graphite based on his work with Iwao Takamoto on the classic pup! We have only one original of the character from Bob’s personal collection for sale.

(how to draw Scooby Doo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FWIJkAzCzgI

He was responsible for a lot of characters at Hanna Barbera, in part because he was tasked early on to start and run the character animation department. He explains:

“In the early days of animation in the 20s and 30s, most of the animators designed their own characters. At Hanna Barbera, the layout artists would be asked to create the incidental characters, like the cop, or housewife, and props like cars but they got so busy that it became a burden to the layout men, so that’s when we started the character design department. It was started with just two, and soon had 15 artists, doing all the characters for 7 different shows, making model sheets and it helped the studio run more efficiently. 

A rare original layout for the 1969 Scooby-Doo Where Are You show’s episode 16, “What a Night for a Fright” from Bob Singer’s personal collection.

everything was compressed as far as production, so sometimes we would work from a script, and other times from storyboards, but then the storyboard artists wouldn’t know what to use for incidental characters, so we’d do a quick sketch and give it to the artists to create the storyboard. Then we also had to get approval from the producer, so I’d design 3 to 5 different versions of the same character, and they’d pick one for us to draw and do turn-arounds on.”

Bob Singer also has a major soft spot for Pebbles, Bamm-Bamm, and the whole Flintstones gang, in part because Wilma reminds him of his wife Harriet, and the babies remind him of his grandchildren.

We’ve all been there. Some days we are Wilma, some days we’re Fred. This piece Bob dedicated to his wife Harriet. Wilma’s specialty is “gravelberry pie”. She eventually sold the recipe to “Safestones” grocery chain. After Pebbles grows up, Wilma starts a successful catering company with her best friend Betty.

Singer says he loves drawing them, and it gives him a feeling of connection to his fans who also have families they love, and kids who are either babies now or are all grown up but parents and grandparents remember as little kids. 

Many of the original cels we have gotten for this cyber show, which are from the later Flintstones cartoons, (as well as those from Scooby-Doo and The Jetsons), are signed by both Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera. We have a lot of pieces that come with original backgrounds. When you purchase any of them, we’ll send the art to Bob Singer, and he’ll be hand-drawing a little image of Fred Flinstone, George Jetson, or Scooby-Doo. For fans and collectors, that’s a lot of cool in one place!


There are so many more images available than what i’ve included in this blog. I’m sure you’d enjoy checking them out!

Basically, Bob Singer has done just about every job that relates to design, character, and background in cartoons. 

Here’s a short list of the many times shows on which he’s been a layout artist:

  • Johnny Bravo (1997-2001)
  • The New Scooby-Doo Movies (1972)
  • Scooby-Doo Where Are You? (1969-1970)
You can see a number of character designs Bob Singer was responsible for in these opening credits. He specialized in ghosts and monsters. Those were his favorite!

The theme song was written by David Mook and Ben Raleigh. Mook was a well-known jingle and theme writer, also famous for The Banana Splits and The Dating Game theme songs. Raleigh wrote hits for, among many, The Monkees, Bobby Darin, Johnny Mathis, Nat King Cole, and Aretha Franklin.
  • Space Ghost (1966)
  • The Man Called Flintstone (1966)
  • The Secret Squirrel Show (1965)
  • Mister Magoo (1960)

A Storyboard artist/director or story director:

  • Droopy: Master Detective (1993-1994)
  • My Little Pony ’n Friends (1986-1987)
  • Pink Panther and Sons (1984-1985)
  • Scooby-Doo, Where Are You? (1970)

A design supervisor:

  • The New Scooby-Doo Mysteries (1984)
  • The Smurfs (1981-1984)
  • SuperFriends  (1984) and Super Friends (1981-1983) World’s Greatest SuperFriends (1979)
  • The New Scooby and Scrappy-Doo Show (1983)
  • Pac-Man (1982-1983)
  • The Fonz and the Happy Days Gang (1980-1981)
  • Laverne and Shirley in the Army (1981) **(also character designer)
  • Scooby-Doo and Scrappy Doo (1979-1980)
  • Jabberjaw (1976)

a character designer:

  • Captain Caveman and the Teen Angels (1977-1980) 
  • Laverne and Shirley in the Army (1981)
  • Scooby’s Laff-A-Lymics (1977)
  • The All New Super Friends Hour (1977)

A production designer:

  • The Scooby-Doo / Dynomutt Hour (1976)-1978
  • The New Tom and Jerry Show (1975)
  • The Great Grape Ape Show (1975)
  • Hong Kong Phooey (1974)
  • Partridge Family 2200 AD (1974)
  • Inch High Private Eye (1973)
  • The Famous Adventures of Mr. Magoo (1964)
  • Gay Purr-ee (1962)

a background artist:

  • The Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Show (1978)
  • Mad as a Mars Hare (1963)
  • Mice Follies (WB Honeymooners Bob McKimson spoof in 1960)
  • Crocket Doodle Doo (WB Foghorn Leghorn/Eggbert Bob McKimson cartoon in 1960) 
  • A Witch’s Tangled Hair (1959)

The Mouse That Jack Built (1959) 

This cartoon is based on the Jack Benny show but stars all the characters as mice, with
Jack Benny himself starring in the cartoon.

So basically he’s done work on many of your favorite Hanna Barbera shows, (and a number that seem the result of protracted drug trips), and some very classic Warner Brothers cartoons!

It’s a great time to get an original by the historic artist, and the original graphites come directly from him and the cels are signed are remarqued by him with characters that are some of his favorites from his career, means you can be assured he is benefitting from the sale, and you are having an interaction with someone responsible for some of the greatest cartoons ever made. (Scooby-Doo, I’m looking at you!)

We hope you’ll take advantage of this great collection of art, and the exclusive signatures and remarques by this animation legend. If not, we hope you enjoyed learning a bit about animator Bob Singer and the crazy cartoons he had a hand in!