If you hadn'tve mentioned the cross between cartoony and realistic, I might not have noticed. It's an excellent peice! But I feel you for the conflict of drives. I don't think the peice suffers for it at all.
Hey! What if you did a triptych: a peice to the right (or the left, your choice) pushing it to the cartoony limit, and then another on the OTHER side pushing it to the realistic extreme? (Just a thought……like I'D
do that, even if I had your talent!)