After leaving school he studied Medicine at Edinburgh University and after graduating worked as a lecturer at the University of Aberdeen. Subsequently, he worked in the National Health Service as a Consultant throughout his career. He remains a Fellow of the Higher Education Authority.
His role as a Doctor generated a profound and deeper interest in the wider experiences of people and this has influenced his artistic practice, something he has maintained throughout his life.
Howard has trained in visual art at Macclesfield College and The University of Salford specialising in painting as a means of representing the lives of people as they experience day-to-day events but also those unique experiences associated with their contact with hospitals. Howard works in a variety of ways, sketching from life, using photography and uses oil painting, watercolour and printing as a means of representing what he sees.