At Blender Conference 2015 Piotr Zgodziński gave a talk about this very topic: From photographer to 3d artist, a personal journey - Piotr Zgodziński. worth the 30 minutes.
I will try to answer the question where it can be done so objectively, but a simple yes / no is unrealistic. If you are going to get into 3d modelling and rendering, then it's a matter of learning a few different skills which are often specialized in industry. Whether you have time to learn the important subtleties of each will decide if it's a cost effective venture, because it will be judged by the end result.
It will take approximately the same amount of time regardless of what software package you finally decide to use. At the minimum you'll want a combination of these skills:
- Texturing / Materials
- Lighting / Rendering
You probably intend to specialize on non animated objects and scenes (a chair with lights is a scene) and that means there's a lot that you don't need to learn to get stuff done. There's also a lot you can re-use between scenes that you only need to set up once (like a good virtual lighting stage, or materials) and then tweak depending on the project.
All these things can be outsourced and it's worth considering.
Blender has superb modeling tools, definitely adequate for creating models for product rendering like furniture, fixtures, anything you might find in a home improvement store catalog. At its heart Blender is an Artistic package, not a CAD tool with ultra high precision needed for Civil engineering (and you won't need that for rendering anyway).
Texturing / Materials
Texturing: The core of this is UV unwrapping, which conceptually works the same over all 3d software, it's not traditionally an automated process. Making a UV map of your object is what lets you define (using seams) which surfaces are distinct from others.
Materials: The core here is the Node system, a modular approach to defining materials and how surfaces respond to light. It's similar for all node based software; you get a collection of nodes with a few parameters and you combine them into larger complex organizations. Just like
+ - / * % can be combined to describe just about any mathematical concept.
Lighting / Rendering
As a photographer you have an advantage here regarding the so called physically based render engines. Blender's own Cycles render engine is an option, but it's not the only one. We compiled a list of external renderers to choose from. You mentioned Chaos Group's V-Ray renderer, it's on that list too.
At a certain level of proficiency people (consumers) can't really tell if a product is rendered at all, or even if they can then only few people would have an easy time betting on which render engine was used.
Some packages have comprehensive specialized training, Blender is no exception: Search and you will find Free or Paid training.
See our resources page for links intended to help learn Blender.