After graduating from Harvard College with honors in 1977, Kevin embarked on a bicycle tour of the British Isles, where he joined the Brighton Basketball Club as a player and coach. After the club hit financial difficulties, Kevin drew caricatures of tourists in Trafalgar Square and on Brighton Pier. In March 1978, The Economist recruited him to become their first resident cartoonist in their 145 year history.
Kevin spent the next 10 years working in London as a cartoonist for such publications as The Observer, The Sunday Telegraph, Today and The Mail on Sunday.
Kevin returned to the U.S. in 1988 to join The Baltimore Sun as its editorial cartoonist. Kal left The Sun in 2006 but later rejoined the paper after a six year hiatus in 2012.
Between the Baltimore Sun and The Economist, Kal has published over 10,000 cartoons. Kal has also painted more than 150 magazine covers for The Economist and other publications.
KAL’s work for The Sun and The Economist has appeared in more than 100 publications worldwide, including Le Monde, Der Spiegel, Pravda, Krokodil, Daily Yomiuri, The Australian, The International Herald Tribune, The New York Times, Time, Newsweek, U.S. News and World Report, and The Washington Post. His cartoons are distributed worldwide by Cartoonarts International and the New York Times Syndicate.
Kevin has won many awards for his work including the 2018 and 2002 Berryman award presented by the National Press Foundation, the 2015 Herblock Prize, prize finalist for the 2015 and 2020 Pulitzer Prize in Editorial Cartooning, 2019 Rex Babin Award for Excellence in US local cartooning, 2014 Grand Prix for Cartoon of the Year in Europe as presented by Press Cartoon Europe, The 1999, 2002, 2005 and 2014 Thomas Nast Award presented by the Overseas Press Club of America, 2005 Nast Prize as presented by The town of Landau, Germany, the 2004 “Gillray Goblet” for Cartoon of the year as presented by the Political Cartoon Society of Great Britain , the 1996 Grafica Internazionale Award at the International Festival of Satire in Pisa, Italy, the 1990 award for Best Editorial Cartoon at the Witty World International Cartoon Festival in Budapest, Hungary and the 1982 Feature Cartoonist of the Year Award as presented by the Cartoonist Club Of Great Britain.
In 2013, He published a major retrospective collection of his Economist drawings entitled Daggers Drawn: 35 Years of Kal Cartoons in The Economist. An earlier collection of his Economist work, Drawn from The Economist was printed in 1988. Four collections of his Baltimore Sun cartoons have been published: KALtoons (1992), KAL Draws a Crowd (1996) and KAL Draws the Line (2000), and KAL Draws Criticism (2006).
Kal’s diverse portfolio for The Economist also includes a 2008 board game he created about the world financial crisis titled “Credit Crunch” and 3 award-winning illustrated Wall calendars.
In 1995, Kevin was invited by The Walter’s Art Gallery to help curate the celebrated exhibit “Worth a Thousand Words: A Picture of Contemporary Political Satire”. In 2006, The Walters mounted a major retrospective exhibition of Kevin’s cartoons titled ” Mightier than The Sword; The Satirical Pen of KAL”.
In 1999, The World Encyclopedia of Cartoons said of Kevin “Commanding a masterful style, Kallaugher stands among the premier caricaturists of the (twentieth) century.”
Kevin Kallaugher is a past President of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists and Cartoonists Rights Network International.
Kal’s work has been widely displayed at exhibitions including at the Tate Gallery in London and the Library of Congress in Washington. He has also had exhibitions in London, Seoul (South Korea), Amman (Jordan), Baku (Azerbaijan), St Petersburg (Russia,) Bucharest (Romania), New York, San Francisco, Washington, Jackson Hole WY, Durham NC, Key West FL and Baltimore.
Kal is also a sought after public speaker addressing audiences in more than 25 countries on issues of current events, satire, cartoons and freedom of expression. Kal has presented TEDx talks in Warwick, England (2011), Jackson Hole, WY (2013) and IdeaCity, Toronto (2015). In addition, Kal has given talks at Oxford, Harvard, Yale, Duke and Berkeley Universities, Pixar Studios and Google HQ. He is represented by Leading Authorities Speakers Bureau.
Kal was Artist-in Residence at University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC) from 2006-2015 and Artist-in-Residence at the Off the Charts Arts Festival, Fort Collins, CO (2017), the Studios at Key West (2016) and the Masterworks Museum in Bermuda (2014), Sanford School of Public Policy, Duke University (2008). He also served as a jury member for the 2012 Pulitzer Prizes.
As his senior thesis at Harvard, Kevin completed a 13 minute animated film ” In The Days of Disgustus” which featured characters from his weekly cartoon strip by the same name that ran in The Harvard Crimson. In 1986, Kevin worked with animation legend Richard Williams to produce ” No Bias” an award winning 30 second television commercial for the Today Newspaper in Great Britain. In 2004 Kevin teamed up with animator Gary Leib at Twinkle studio to create flash animation video for ABC’s “Nightline”.
In 2006, Kevin was named Artist-in-Residence at the Imaging Research Center at The University of Maryland Baltimore County. With the IRC, Kevin explored the development of 3D digital caricatures that can be animated in Real-time. His first character, The Digital Dubya, premiered at a live press conference at the Walters Art Museum in June 2006. The premier of his digital animation was in March 2007 when The Economist commissioned a web video to coincide with the launch of a gallery of KAL’s cartoons on the magazine’s website.
Kevin lauched a Maryland based animation company Kaltoons LLC in 2007. Kaltoons first video “Dancin” Dubya” was launched August, 2007.
Starting in October 2007, KAL teamed up with Chicago’s famous “Second City” comedy troupe for a 6 city touring show called ‘The Art of Satire”. KAL employed “real-time” interactive animated satire for the shows including live press conferences and dance competitions with his 3-D caricatures.
In 2013 KAL produced a series of short animations titled “KAL Draws Economics” explaining various economic terms for The Economist website