How to transform a Gabor patch into a semantic pointer


I am new to Nengo and would like to create a SPA model which categorizes Gabor patches. The Gabor patches are represented as 2D arrays. My main technical question is how do I transform the Gabor patches into a semantic pointer? In the article Concepts as Semantic Pointers: A Framework and
Computational Model, vectors were normalized to unit length. In my case, should I convert the 2D array to a vector and then transform it into unit length?

As this is my first model, I am also interested in any general advice or examples that are applicable to a categorization model.

Thank you in advance.