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So, I'm following this great tutorial from Sebastian Lague. And this is exactly what I am doing: In Edit Mode, I select both the Foot.L bone, then its IK Controller bone (behind). Then hit Ctrl P to parent the the former to the latter, choosing "Keep Offset" (as in the image). Then switch to Pose Mode, select the IK Controller and rotate it. That's it! Clearly I'm missing something somewhere along this process, because when I rotate the IK Controller it detaches the Foot.L bone from the Leg.L bone. Feel free to try the .blend file.

enter image description here

enter image description here enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ the blend file you give doesn't look at all like your screenshot, and for example there is no IK bone, could you please give your current file? If you want the foot to stick to the lower leg, give it a Copy Location constraint with the lower leg as Target. $\endgroup$
    – moonboots
    Feb 5, 2019 at 21:26
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the info moonboots. The screenshot crop above it's from the vidtut I was referring to in my post. I don't have a mesh to use yet, but according to the tutorial, at this stage it is not needed either. I did try your advise, except the Foot.L bone jumps to top of the Leg.L bone. I'll add screenshots soon... $\endgroup$ Feb 5, 2019 at 23:22

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This is happening because of where you've set the bone to rotate around. In the video, he has the IK bone and the foot bone rotating in the same spot. In your file, the IK bone is rotating around a point off to the side of the foot bone (at the center of the sphere). This means that any bone that is parented to that IK bone will move in an arc around that IK bone.

Think of it this way: when parenting objects/bones you're telling Blender that bone A has to always be at some position relative to bone B. Let's say that this position is 3 inches to the left of bone B along the X axis of bone B. When we rotate bone B, it's local axes rotate with it. So after rotating bone B, it's X axis could be pointing straight up, or forward, off to one side at 56.67809 degrees, you get my point. But bone A will still follow along, and be 3 inches along the X axis, wherever it points.

So if you move your IK bone to have it's base where the base of your foot bone is, everything should be good to go(try setting the cursor at the base of the foot then using Snap to Cursor). Since the sphere will now be on top of the foot, the foot will be hard to see. If you select the IK bone and go to where you selected the custom shape you can choose wireframe to make it see through.

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Let's do it from scratch because it will be simpler:

  • Create your armature with a thigh, a lowerleg, a foot, an IK controller and a IK poletarget.
  • In Edit mode, bend a bit the knee forward so that it knows how to bend the leg.
  • Unparent the IK controller and the IK poletarget. In the Properties panel > Bone > disable the Deform option of these two bones so that they won't be parented to the mesh.
  • Parent the foot to the IK controller (Keep Offset mode).
  • In Pose mode, give the lowerleg an IK constraint, choose the controller bone as the Target and the poletarget bone as Pole Target. Choose a value of 2 for the Chain Length (the IK will play on the lowerleg + thigh). You may need to play with the Bone Angle value to make it correctly rotated.
  • If you want the foot to stick to the bottom of the lowerleg, give it a Copy Location constraint with the lower leg as Target and with a Head/Tail value of 1.
  • You may also want to parent (Keep Offset mode) the poletarget bone the controller.

enter image description here

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