Retail Fonts

Mister K – the Franz Kafka Font

Kafka quote with FF Mister K Regular

The FF Mister K type family originated in the manuscripts of Austro-Hungarian writer Franz Kafka (1883–1924). The name “Mister K” comes from the main characters of the novels “The Castle” and “The Trial”. Kafka had a very expressive handwriting with strong calligraphic features. The different font members of the Mister K family reflect various moods and stages in the writer’s writing style. All Mister K text fonts provide advanced typographical support with OT-features such as alternate characters, ligatures, case-sensitive forms, fractions, super- and subscript characters, and stylistic alternates. To find out all about the Mister K project visit ffmisterk.com.

FF Mister K Core Family

Sample of Mister K Regular
Mister K Regular is similar to the writing we can find in Kafka‘s first drafts for the story “Metamorphosis” and the novel “The Trial”. It is a fluently connected script with frequent form variations due to an abundance of characteristic ligatures. Its look and feel is much that of a working typeface and it has only few obviously decorative elements.
Sample of FF Mister K Onstage
In Mister K Onstage the calligraphic features are more emphasized than the Regular. Its glyphs have more contrast, they are less connected and as an option the style contains swashes for the capitals and the word endings.
Sample of FF Mister K Crossout
FF Mister K Crossout contains every character in a crossed out version. By selecting it the user can cross out long stetches of text written with the Regular or Onstage. The effect reminds of some pages in Kafka’s manuscripts where he was obviously stuggling to find the best solution.
Kafka book series by Peter Mendelsund, for the publishing house Schocken
Franz Kafka Series by Schocken. Peter Mendelsund designed these covers for a series of Kafka pocket books. His compositions with their bright colors, powerful illustrations and headlines set in FF Mister K received a very positive echo.
Working with Franz Kafka’s manuscripts.
Working with the manuscripts

FF Mister K OpenType Features

All FF Mister K fonts have OpenType features to determine the fonts’ behaviour in different contexts. Most of the coding for this is located in the features liga and calt. Generally it is best to keep these features turned on — as they are by default because then the glyph connections work best, and the overall impression is closest to Kafka’s writing styles.

Mister K Regular sample: Contextual alternates and standard ligatures turned on.
Mister K Regular sample with contextual alternates and standard ligatures turned on.
Mister K Regular sample: Stylistic Set / Stylistic Alternates turned on.
Activation of Stylistic Set (InDesign) or Stylistic Alternates (Illustrator, Photoshop) leads to a set of simple, disconnected characters. They are meant mainly for abbreviations, names in all caps, formulas etc.
Mister K Regular sample: variants of the letter a
To ensure that glyph connections look natural FF Mister K is equipped with many alternates for one and the same character. Here some ‘a’ alternates for word beginnings and endings, medium and low connections or deliberate disconnections.

Special Effects

Of course: On the computer you can write without mistakes. But mistakes are human, and with Mister K you can purposely show them, as well as your corrections. See below how it’s done. The editing marks shown are available for all FF Mister K text fonts.

Crossing out a word with FF Mister K
To cross out a word hit emdash repeatedly.
Striking through a word with FF Mister K
To stike through a word hit endash repeatedly.
Creating a wavy underline with FF Mister K
To create a wavy underline hit almost equal repeatedly.
Creating a single underline with FF Mister K
To create a single underline hit underscore repeatedly.
Creating a double underline with FF Mister K
To create a double underline hit equal repeatedly.
Sample of Mister K Regular meaning
Sample of Mister K Regular Cyrillic
FF Mister K Regular and FF Mister K Informal have an extended Cyrillic character set. Here a quote from Kafka’s “Investigations of a Dog” in Ukrainian translation – set in Mister K Regular.
Mister K for Berlin Design Hotel “Das Stue”
Mister K has many friends. Among them top-notch Berlin Hotel “Das Stue”. Photo by “Das Stue”.
Mister K for Design Hotel “Das Stue” in Berlin, the stationary
Design Hotel “Das Stue” in Berlin, stationary
Mister K for “quarters” buildings, Amsterdam
“quarters” – space for business, Amsterdam
FF Mister K in an exhibition about artistic Kafka books at the German National Library, Leipzig.
FF Mister K playing a home match in an exhibition about artistic Kafka books at the German National Library, Leipzig.
FF Mister K in an exhibition about artistic Kafka books at the German National Library, Leipzig.
More about an exhibition at the German National Library, Leipzig.
FF Mister K in use at “Sommers Naturheilpraxis”
Sommers Naturheilpraxis – a small & pricy naturopathy practice for children and adults in Berlin Prenzlauer Berg.

Mister K family members received a Certificate of Typographic Excellence at the Moscow Modern Cyrillic Competition, an ISTD Premier Award in London and a TDC Award at the New York Type Directors Club Typeface Design Competition.

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