Sometimes you can look at a painting and ask , 'how did he do that?' Howard's work sometimes begs that question especially when it comes to his streetscapes with puddles after the rain. His "traditional" style can often be very draughtsman like and you get the feeling he uses the surroundings to ensure he gets the precision he wants. This is often clear in his internal works which often feature a half clad or nude woman looking out the window in his studio!
Howard was born in London in 1932 and studied at the Hornsey College of Art (1949–53) and the Royal College of Art (1955–58). In 1958 he won a British Council Scholarship to Florence. He spent his National Service in the Royal Marines (1953–55). In 1973 and 1978 he was the Official War Artist to Northern Ireland, and 1973–80 worked in various locations, including Hong Kong, Cyprus and Canada with the British Army. In 1983 he was elected an Associate of the Royal Academy (ARA). In 1998 he became President of the New English Art Club, a post he held until 2003. In 1991 he was elected a Royal Academician (RA).
His work is in public collections including the National Army Museum, Guildhall Art Gallery, Ulster Museum and Imperial War Museum. Howard was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2010 Birthday Honours.