The 1997 recipient of the prestigious Dean of Filipino Cartoonists honor, Alcala produced close to fifteen thousand pages of cartoons and illustrations over the course of his nearly six-decade career. His most popular comic strips include Slice of Life, Kalabog en Bosyo, and Mang Ambo.
After graduating from the University of the Philippines, he published his debut comic strip, Siopawman.
He taught for many years at the University of the Philippines' College of Fine Arts.
Born Lauro Zarate Alcala, he grew up in Daraga, Albay, Philippines, and later settled in Manila.
He was a contemporary of fellow Filipino cartoonist Tony DeZuniga