Alpha over question

I’m super new to the composting process and I’m having troubles combining layers while rendering. I tried watching a bunch of youtube videos and got most of the effects I want, but I’m stuck at the alpha over. When I hit render, both layers render and I can access them, but the composite render only renders whatever layer is on top.

Top layer render (and all that shows on composite render):

Bottom Layer render:

And my composting view:

Any help would be appreciated.


Render with a transparent background
Blender Render = Render / Shading / Alpha setting
Cycles Render = Render / Film, enable transparent

Also, temporarily attach a Viewer node at various strategic points (linking their output to the background of the nodes window) so that you can s-e-e what each layer of data actually contains.

“Don’t guess at it … LOOK(!) at it!”