Earlier today, as I was fiddling around on the guitar something suddenly hit me. I saw a fretboard pattern emerge which I had previously never noticed.
What became apparent was a very simply way to play the chords of any major scale.
Using the major F scale as an example, begin on the first fret of the sixth string. The next two scale steps are two frets up, then another two frets up (giving us F, G and A). For the rest of the scale, move back to the first fret of the fifth string. Move up two frets, four times for each remaining scale step (giving us Bb, C, D and E). The starting point determines the scale.
Using this easy-to-remember outline, you can put together major and minor chords that sound cohesive with one another, allowing you to either learn the overall mood of a scale or even create a simple song.