Van Howell has drawn numerous illustrations for major New York newspapers — Newsday, the Wall Street Journal, the Times, and the Daily News. Other clients have included Random House, MetLife, Exxon, American Banker, AdWeek, Esquire, Lincoln Center, the Smithsonian Museums, and most of the major New York ad agencies. His ink caricatures have won awards from the Society of Illustrators and the Society for News Design; SND judged his WSJ portrait of Frank Zappa the best American newspaper illustration of 1988. His portrait of Mark Rothko opens the chapter on illustration in A Guide to Drawing, the noted art history textbook. During twelve years in London, Howell did political cartoons for the Guardian and portrait commissions, taught life drawing and creative writing, and filled dozens of sketchbooks with nudes and cathedrals. He exhibited at the annual juried show of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters, and his work can be seen in the on-line British Cartoon Archive. Howell’s distinctive ink-and-brush drawing technique was adapted from sign painting and calligraphy.