I wanted to draw a picture, but since all my attempts sucked, I decided to try a new painted style of coloring. I used this as a base, keeping none of them. None of the actual base picture was used in this one.
Hmmm...yeah, this is totally epic and worth whatever amount of time you put into it. Honestly, it'd be great if this could be taken as your main method of coloring, but for practical development purposes this would be the stuff you'd use to show off the full design of each character. Excellent and overall amazing to behold, I'd love to see more of your characters done with this ultra-realistic painting style.
Cartoony appearances can help and hinder in various respects. I'm pretty certain if you 'dumbed down' the amount of detail in this particular bit of artwork to slightly more cartoony, you'd get a good balance of realism with the intricate detail of realism.
It's something I've been trying to achieve myself, but just can't figure out since I'm spending so much less time doing art.