After working as a book designer and freelance graphic designer, Alcalá opened Studio A in 1988. Since then his studio has won awards of excellence in design from local, national, and international design institutions including AIGA, Print, Communication Arts, and Graphis. His clients include: the National Gallery of Art, Library of Congress, National Portrait Gallery, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, National Museum of Women in the Arts, National Geographic Society, Folger Shakespeare Library, The Phillips Collection, and Smithsonian Institution.
Alcalá is an adjunct faculty member of the Corcoran College of Art & Design in Washington, D.C., and founder of the design education program DesignWorkshops. He serves on the board of the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Association and is a past president of the Art Directors Club of Metropolitan Washington. The AIGA DC Chapter selected Alcalá as its 2008 AIGA Fellow. His work is represented in the AIGA Design Archives and the Library of Congress Permanent Collection of Graphic Design. From 2010 to 2011 he served on the Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee before leaving it to become an Art Director.
Alcalá graduated from Yale University with a BA in history and from the Yale School of Art with an MFA in graphic design. He lives with his wife in Alexandria, Virginia.